Greetings to the families of my fourth grade class of 2017! Just a few years ago, your child entered kindergarten not knowing what to expect and now they are ready to take a leadership role at Olmsted Elementary. My name is Keith Wanninger, and I’m very excited to be your child’s teacher this year! I have been teaching at Olmsted since 1988. Before coming to Urbandale, I taught four years in LeMars, Iowa. I attended Simpson College and graduated with a double major in elementary education and physical education. I have taught 4th grade for most of my teaching career.
Even though teaching takes up a majority of my day, I am just as busy at home spending time with my family. I have been married to my wife, Pam, for 27 years. We have two daughters; Dani, who is a speech-language pathologist with Heartland AEA, and Holly, who is following in my footsteps and majoring in elementary education at UNI. During my summer breaks, I teach driver’s education. With my little free time, I like to golf and cheer on the Iowa Hawkeyes. A long-term goal of mine is to travel across the country and visit every major league baseball stadium.
Being a teacher brings a lot of responsibility. Each year, I make a commitment to create a learning environment that will benefit all of my students. I want students to take school seriously, but I also want them to have fun. In my classroom you will see lots of laughter and lots of hard work. There will be homework this school year, but if you and your child plan ahead, it will very manageable. Fourth grade is a year of learning states and capitals, mastering multiplication and division facts, and reading many non-fiction books. The highlight of the year is our annual trip to the Omaha Zoo in May. Since we will be studying many different biomes throughout the year, this is a great way to see them in person.
I look forward to getting to know you and your child as the year begins, and also getting reacquainted with those of you who have had siblings in my classroom before. With open communication, we will make this a very special year for your child. See you in the fall!