I am Kara Torkelson and I will be starting my 30th year teaching French in the Wausau School District. I was inspired to be a teacher when I was 13 years old. After high school I did my undergraduate studies at Bemidji State University. I graduated with a double major in Elementary Education and High School French. I have studied and lived in France. My first job was teaching 8th grade French at John Muir Middle School. I continued my studies by receiving my Master of Arts degree in French from the University of California Santa Barbara.
Since then I have been teaching French at Wausau West High School.
My first trip to France was when I was 16 and it changed my life forever. I have led several student trips to France and Canada. I love to see my students use their language skills and experience a new culture.
In March 2018, I was awarded the AATF Exemplary French Program Award for Wausau West High School. Currently, I am the Past President of AATF (American Association of Teachers of French) Wisconsin chapter. I am an active member of WAFLT and received the WAFLT (Wisconsin Association of Foreign Language Teachers) Merit Teacher Award in 2014. I am currently the WAFLT monthly eVoice editor. I also run the Wausau West French Club and International Club and I am the Global Scholars Coordinator.
I have coached Poms at John Muir and South Mountain Elementary and have taught a variety of summer school classes which have included theater, dance, health academy and board games. I have also coached volleyball at John Muir.
My husband and I have been married 29 years and have 2 children and one cat. One of my favorite activities is going to garage sales and collecting dishes. I am a YMCA certified aerobic instructor and love exercise and fitness. I also do private tutoring.
I love teaching French!