Foreign Language in the Elementary Schools

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Brief Bios


Autumn Andrade-de León:

It is a privilege to be able to work collaboratively across the Sharon School District to make this program come alive. As the program’s facilitator, a seasoned teacher, and parent of a current second grader, the development of this curriculum is the perfect challenge at the perfect time! I believe strongly that languages open many doors be they professional, social, or “doors” in the brain that lead to higher achievement overall. I am originally from New York City and moved to Sharon when my first son was just a toddler. I have a 100% open-door policy and welcome questions/concerns at any point. You can always reach me via email at: Here are some other fact facts about me:

  • My name is pronounced [Ahn-drah-deh-deh-leh-own]. My first career was as a writer and my first job after college was as a Reporter for Time Magazine.
  • I am a graduate of Smith College (undergrad) and the University of Pennsylvania (graduate)
  • I am a heritage speaker of Spanish.
  • I am a triathlete! I also love hiking and knitting.
  • I am the mother of two energetic boys.

Emily Van Vaerenewyck:

¡Hola! My name is Emily Van Vaerenewyck, and this will be my second year teaching Spanish in the Sharon elementary schools. I am thrilled to be teaching first and second grade at East Elementary and helping to develop the FLES program.

I majored in Spanish as an undergraduate student at Providence College and received my Master’s degree from Simmons College. I had unforgettable experiences studying abroad in Salamanca and Córdoba, Spain and traveling throughout Europe. I taught elementary and middle school Spanish at a private school before coming to Sharon High, where I taught all levels of Spanish. After staying home with my kids for several years, I am excited to return to Sharon at the elementary level. It is the perfect time for students to begin developing a second language!

When I am not teaching, I love spending time with my family- camping, hiking and kayaking are some of my favorite activities. I love to garden and to be outdoors as much as possible!

I am energetic, enthusiastic and love making learning fun! I am delighted to have the opportunity to teach your children this year! Please feel free to contact me with any questions that may arise. The best way to contact me is through email at:

Pamela Billings:

I first learned Spanish in Ecuador when I lived with a family who spoke absolutely no English. After surviving that, I traveled to Spain and Honduras, and here I am – thrilled to be working with the families of Sharon! I graduated from Northeastern University and I am in the middle of my Master’s degree from Spain. This is my first year teaching at Cottage Street but I have also taught Spanish at the middle and high school levels. I like to eat chocolate and learn new things, in that order. I am an amateur puppeteer, a science fiction aficionado, and I have always wanted to have my butler bring me tea and scones on a silver tray. Next to a fire. In a castle. In England.

Email me at:

Follow me on Twitter: @senorabillings


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