Tundra Teachers

This list of teacher blogs started at Tundra Teachers November 10th, 2007 on my Edublog, Cerebral Odd Jobs -- have mind, will wander. Careful thought, etc. I thought it might be easier to scan (peruse) if re-posted here.

[updated] 2008-03-20
At one point there were few teachers from the tundra regions writing blogs. Few enough I could put them all into one RSS feed mix in the sidebar as I came across them.

This year there are quite a few new teachers writing about their experience teaching in rural Alaska. All the blogs are different in their approach and frequency of posting. Some are interested in hearing from readers; others are not. Margaret Avugiak and Kendra Krenz have unique perspectives.

I haven’t run across anyone using blogs in the classroom, yet. The Shageluk school is using their website, instead.

I wish more schools would use a blogging, especially WordPress.com and Edublogs.org, platform as that enables more communication between classrooms and between writers and readers. Plus, all the blogging platforms offer RSS feeds for subscribing; some offer comment feeds such as WordPress and Edublogs. (Blogspot.com or Blogger has too many hoops for ordinary folks who wish to interact with the authors. However, just about all the major blogging hosts are represented. MSN Live tends to be used more by missionaries. Xanga has too few representatives and TypePad tends to have Alaska journalists.)

Take a look at all and suggest others. The community names are in brackets [ ]. To view information about the Alaska communities, simply put the village or city name where the Xxxx are (case sensitive) in your browser address bar when you get to this link

For example, information about Bethel is located here: http://www.commerce.state.ak.us/dca/commdb/CIS.cfm?Comm_Boro_Name=Bethel







  • [Chevak] Oct 15, 2008 North to Alaska – http://annbender.blogspot.com/ Ann and Tom’s experiences in Chevak, Alaska. Ann Bender–Tom and I are both retired, sort of, and we are spending a couple of years in Chevak Alaska for the fun of it, for the challenge, and for a change. Hope we live through it. My former blog – the one that details our trip up here from Georgia and the first couple of months in Chevak is located at http://web.mac.com/annbender355/ I had load of trouble getting it to update, so finally gave up and joined Google.



Hooper Bay



  • [Kasigluk (Akula)] Dec 20, 2008 The Substitute Puppy (I couldn’t get a dog, so I got a blog.) http://subpuppy.blogspot.com/ Kyle Marvin. The classroom blog is http://lksd.org/akula/Welcome.html/

  • [Kasigluk Mar 4, 2008 http://victoriasjourneys.blogspot.com/, My Adventures, Victoria, I will be teaching 4th-6th grade and living in a house with no plumbing. http://classroomtag.blogspot.com/ Classroom Tag … Exchanging traditions, customs, beliefs, and other cultural identities. … Bringing together two classrooms that are separated by thousands of miles.

  • [Akula, Kasigluk consists of two smaller villages, called Akiuk and Akula ] Nov 16, 2008 http://four2alaska.blogspot.com/ Four to Alaska (Ward Family) We’re moving to Alaska. Two teachers, two kids. Join us for stories, pics and news of our adventures as we leave Oklahoma and head north.










  • [Nunapitchuk] Jan 6, 2008 The Middle of Somewhere Teaching, living, and now gestating a baby in Nunapitchuk, Alaska http://smaccalaska.blogspot.com/



Russian Mission




Toksook Bay





  • Alaska Mentor Pat http://alaskamentorpat.blogspot.com/ “I work around the state of Alaska as a mentor teacher. I travel monthly to 8 different rural communities as well as working in Fairbanks. My job is to collaborate with first and second year teachers on their classroom practice.”
  • [Lower Kuskokwim School District] Mar 25, 2008 Science News from the Lower Kuskokwim (another Edublogs) http://lksdscience.edublogs.org/

  • Aug 19, 2008 Kevin & Dusti’s blog – http://kevindusti.vox.com/ Somewhere in the Kuskokwim, I think. Doesn’t say where, yet. From out of state.

And there is this school, not exactly of children, but definitely learning and interesting.

For another idea of what life in a remote school is like check out this news story. Be sure to read the comments posted at APRN as well.

Teaching in small rural schools presents unique challenges (mp3)

“The Lake & Penninsula Borough has 14 schools but only 370 students. The smallest school has 10 students K-12. The largest has 75 students. Small schools in secluded parts of the state resent unique challenges to teachers who have to teach multiple subjects to multiple grade levels. Anne Hillman, KDLG – Dillingham 3/14/2008 06:17″

Site Search Tags: tundra, teachers, Alaska, Alaska+Native, bush, Eskimo, Inuit, Athabascan, blogs, culture+shock, tundra+teachers, journal

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23 responses to “Tundra Teachers

  1. Thank you for the reference. I appreciate the opportunity to increase understanding of the conditions of the bush. Savoonga is a harsh land, but it is a unique opportunity and a unique place to teach. Thanks again.

    Savoonga is even further from Wal-Mart than Bethel and the Kuskokwim (as one measure of distance and effort. mpb

  2. [Bethel] “The” Alaskan Experience

    Well, I applied for a teacher position in April and I actually got it! So, I gathered all of my little belongings and headed to a place I’ve only seen on the Discovery Channel or “The Deadliest Catch.” I thought I would be flying in a bush plane and flashes of “The Hatchet” kept popping up in my mind. So, here I am in Alaska, as a first grade teacher. I’m getting used to the town and to the wonderful people here.

    Bethel, Alaska, United States
    I am a first grade teacher stationed here in Bethel. I am originally from Michigan.

  3. [Bethel] Northern Exposure: The New Class – http://elyseinalaska.blogspot.com/

  4. SadieNell
    Bethel, Alaska, United States
    I am a kindergarten/first grade teacher stationed here in Bethel. I am originally from Michigan.

  5. The View From the North – http://steveandangiealston.blogspot.com/
    The adventures of a teaching couple in Shishmaref, an Inupiaq Eskimo village twenty miles south of the Arctic Circle.


    Born and raised in Bethel, AK. Now working at the same elementary school I went to. However, fall of 2009 we’ll be moving into the new Gladys Jung Elementary School.

  7. Eric Ellefson http://ericwillblowyourmind.blogspot.com [Tununak]

    Home school teacher far from home visits Bethel
    “The adventures of Donna and Rachel”

    “Alaskan Adventure” http://kimcary.blogspot.com/ [Newtok]

  8. “Greetings from Sunny Western Alaska

    Rantings, reports, ravings, and revelations as Kevin Barnett deals with life and frequently teaching in various places in southwest Alaska as I find them.”
    http://harebrainedadventure.blogspot.com/ [Tuntutuliak, Mekoryuk]

  9. Amanda
    I recently graduated from Marian College and I am currently in Kongiganak, Alaska to teach special education!

    “Amanda’s Alaskan Adventures ”

  10. [Kasigluk] Maria’s Musings in Akiuk, Alaska:
    I came to Akiuk, AK in August 2009 as a teacher. I teach English and special education. I taught in Peoria, Illinois before making the move to Kasigluk- Akiuk. I also worked as an actress at the Barn 2 Dinner Theater in Goodfield, Illinois.”

  11. I am a born and raised Alaskan, originally from Anchorage, teaching in the elementary wing at Chevak School in Chevak, AK. This is a documentary of my life in the bush. Enjoy!

    Camai! Pam

  12. [Hooper Bay] “Tundra Topics” by Cate Koskey


  13. [Quinhagak] http://jsbarthelman.blogspot.com/ Ah Alaska! Jim Barthelman, 5th grade

  14. “Teaching in Alaska ”
    David Thorne
    * Location: Emmonak : Alaska :

  15. Sandra Dee
    * Location: Koliganek : AK
    “My Alaskan Adventure! ”

  16. “Adventures of an Alaskan Bush Teacher ”

    The late Candice Berner, special ed teacher in Lake and Peninsula Borough

    “Before rural teacher’s death, a wild, vivid blog”

  17. Being Poetry – http://02f6373.netsolhost.com/WordPress/
    Erin Coughlin Hollowell
    Cordova (?) (alpine tundra)

  18. Angela Brian, Bethel (Bethel Alternative Boarding School house parent)

  19. To Philly, from Alaska w/Love
    (I believe this is the very first bush village teacher blog. Are there earlier ones?)

    • Very likely you are correct. When I started listing and following teachers on the tundra, I may not have included inactive blogs. I’m glad you mentioned yours. The “historical” blogs are also interesting. And, important to understanding rural Alaska education.


      PS- some teachers, well, two that I know of, had newspaper columns instead of blogs, that early.

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