Third Grade

Third grade is a big transition year. They are not primary students, but not quite upper graders. There is a lot of new learning and discovery that takes place in this monumental year. Third graders are no longer focusing on learning to read, but they are reading to learn. We believe in a well rounded and inclusive curriculum. We want third graders to ask questions, search for answers and find new pathways to solving problems. This is the year where they learn about the wonderful community they live in and its rich history. We want them to appreciate the natural  beauty of their home and always work to protect it. We plant the seeds for lifelong learning, becoming an engaged citizen and working toward making the world a more empathetic place.

Mary Paterson

I grew up in Carpinteria and went on to receive my degree in Psychology from the University of Washington. Go Huskies! While I loved my four years in Seattle, I returned home to attend UCSB to obtain my M.Ed and teaching credential. I began my teaching career in Oxnard where I taught for four years. In 2006, I began working for the Goleta Union School District at El Camino where I worked for ten years. I’ve taught 2nd-3rd-4th-and 5th grades, along with multiple combination classes.  


For the last six years, I’ve loved being a part of the Kellogg community. Third grade is the perfect grade!  It’s a sweet spot where students still enjoy aspects of primary learning, but grow into sophisticated and responsible upper graders. I love inspiring students to become problem solvers, stay organized and practice using strategies to access academic content in depth. Based on our studies of local history I encourage students to become integral members of our community.  Students in my classroom collaborate, communicate, care for each other and use their creativity to learn at their own pace. Our incredible grade level team emphasizes social emotional well-being, inclusivity, social justice and the importance of kindness. We love our annual square dance performance too!


When I’m not teaching, I enjoy spending time with my husband, our two children, and our yellow lab. My hobbies include running, traveling, scrapbooking, watching sports, going to the beach, hiking, reading and being with my family and friends.  

Kacie Stempel

I have taught in Goleta since 2004 and have enjoyed teaching at Kellogg the past 6 years. I feel lucky to be a part of a community that celebrates diversity and focuses on inclusion.  I have a B.A. in Sociology with a minor in United States History, a Multi Subject Teaching Credential and a Masters in Education. I have taught 2nd, 3rd and 4th grades. I have spent the majority of my career teaching 3rd grade and I find it to be a magical age. They are growing and maturing as students and full of curiosity.  Third graders are reading to learn instead of learning to read, opening up a whole new world. 


I live in the Kellogg neighborhood and I have two children that are also Bulldogs. My youngest son is in preschool. My husband and I are proud Gauchos. I enjoy hosting holidays and BBQ’s, traveling to the mountains and baking with my daughter.


Amy Damron

After receiving a Bachelor of Science degree in Psychology from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo and a Masters in Education from UCSB I launched my career as a teacher.  Eighteen years ago I accepted my first teaching position in the Bay Area where I worked for 10 years. While I loved my life up north I decided to come home and accepted a job teaching in the Santa Barbara School District. Six short years ago I decided to join my sons at our home school, Kellogg, and have loved every minute! My experiences teaching 3rd, 5th, and 6th grades have offered me the opportunity to understand how best to facilitate the major change in a child’s life as they transition from primary grades to intermediate. 


I view teaching in a holistic way and place great emphasis on connecting with my students. I encourage them to take an active role in shaping our classroom while also providing them with the academic guidance and challenge necessary to help them grow as learners and as compassionate, thoughtful citizens.


In my free time I love to be outside, whether it be for a walk on the beach or hiking in the mountains with my husband and two boys, it recharges me to be out in nature! I am also passionate about nutrition and enjoy sharing this with my students and family.