Kindergarten Teachers

CARMEN LAU

Growing up in Toronto, my parents dragged me to Chinese school on the weekends starting at a very young age. In retrospect, I am grateful that I not only learned one more language but also kept my cultural heritage. As I grew older, my love for the Chinese language and culture grew resulting in me taking more Chinese courses in university and studying abroad in Hong Kong and Beijing. Now, I am very happy to use my language skills to teach children to be bilingual and bi-literate in an exciting, fun, and engaging immersion environment.
 
Since my parents are both educators, my interest in teaching began early on. Throughout high school, I volunteered to read with children and to help them with their homework. My love for working with children continued as I attended Cornell University where I studied psychology and Asian studies. I later moved to San Francisco and pursued my teaching credential and Masters in Elementary Education.  I started teaching Kindergarten in 2011 and fell in love.  It is such an honor and an incredible experience time and time again to watch the students come in as uncertain preschool grads, some not even knowing a single word of Chinese, and guide them to learn and blossom throughout the year.  In my spare time, I enjoy spending time with my husband and two sons, taking walks, reading books, watching movies, listening to music, and of course, working with children.
 
I strongly believe that a good learning experience is built on a collaborative effort amongst the parents, child, and teacher. I am excited and looking forward to the work and growth we will all accomplish this year! Please feel free to contact me via my district email or in person after school.

STEPHEN LAU

My approach to teaching has been heavily influenced by my own experiences learning Chinese as a child.  I, like many other Chinese Americans, attended a very traditional Saturday Chinese school where there was an emphasis on rote memorization towards learning.  I hated every minute of it.  I believe that learning should be fun, engaging, and most importantly of all, meaningful.  I am excited to be here at CIS; this is the type of school my mother would have wanted me to attend growing up.

Prior to teaching at CIS, I taught English in Guangzhou, China, as well as Vocational ESL to displaced Chinese garment workers.  I have a Bachelor’s degree in History with a minor in Asian American Studies from UC Berkeley as well as a Master’s in English with an emphasis on Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages from San Francisco State University.  In my spare time, I am on the constant lookout for new reading material and travel destinations!

AIMEE YU

I am a native Chinese speaker born in Hong Kong. In 1982, I immigrated to the United States with my family and began attending the public schools in San Francisco Unified School District. In addition to learning English as a Second Language, I continue the development of my Chinese by attending St. Mary’s Chinese School in San Francisco’s Chinatown.

After receiving my teaching credential from San Francisco State University, I have been teaching in the primary grades in the SFUSD since 1996. During my first 13 years, I taught K-3rd Grade English learners in both Chinese Bilingual and English Language Development programs Cesar Chavez School in the Mission District. In 2009, I became a National Board certified teacher. In that same year, I joined Chinese Immersion School at DeAvila and have since taught grades K-2nd.

In my spare time, I enjoy reading, traveling, and playing a Chinese musical instrument called the Guzheng. I find that these activities help to rejuvenate and energize me. I also love spending time with my girls, doing activities with them and watching them learn and grow.

I look forward to working collaboratively with the CIS community in building a successful immersion program so our students will become bilingual individuals.