New Yorker Danielle Siebenhuener is new french teacher

Jenna Mccaslin, Photographer

Ms. Danielle Siebenhuener, the new French teacher at Bellefonte High, brings a lot of new things to our school and wants everyone to get to know her as someone in our community. 

Originally from New York, she enjoys the pace of Bellefonte and has decided to settle down here and teach. And bring on the culture and knowledge of the French language. 

“I came to Bellefonte because I absolutely love the area. I came to Penn State for the first time in 2018 as a freshman, and automatically fell in love with the atmosphere, as well as all of the new connections I was making,” she said.

She loves to be surrounded by our community and learn what life has to offer here. 

“After I came to Bellefonte High School, I fell in love with the school community and culture, and knew that I had to be a part of it. I am so very grateful, and I am looking forward to growing as an educator, and engaging my students in the world of French,” she said. 

There are many more things to know about her outside of the classroom, like her love for self-care.

“In my free time when I am not planning for school, I love to do a lot of self care. If it is warm outside I love to go for walks in nature, as well as long drives through the mountains here in Happy Valley,” she said. 

Music also plays a big part in her life too, especially French music. It helps her get into the groove of things. 

“I also love to listen to music and talk to my friends from back home. Often while I am planning, I have French music playing in the background – it allows me to feel immersed in the language. I feel as though I am planning in a French cafe,”  she said. 

She loves more than just the town of Bellefonte; she also enjoys State College, especially the Penn State area. 

“I love being on the Penn State campus. It brings me such happiness now being back here, now in this teaching role that I had always dreamed of,” she said.

Teaching is a real passion of hers. She spends lots of time on lesson planning and making sure her students have a good and memorable experience of learning. 

“What I love most about teaching are my students. I love being able to make an impact, and I always make it known to my students that I am there for them–more than just academically. I strive each and every day to support my kids in each and every way,” she said.

Many of the reasons she tries to make the classroom more entertaining, is because many teachers that inspired her, made her want the classroom to be a fun learning environment.

“When I was going through high school, I had teachers that I aspired to be like, and ever since those experiences, it had become my passion to strive to be the same for my own students,” she said. 

There are many things she does in her spare time, but she is passionate about being a hockey fan. 

“Some of my hobbies include reading, staying in tune with language, as well as doing yoga and watching hockey. I am not too sorry to say that I am a New York Rangers fan. I love to watch hockey games, and if I am home, I love to attend those games at Madison Square Garden,” she said. 

Besides keeping up with French content, she also enjoys Italian culture and the memories it holds for her. 

“I love to do Italian crossword puzzles. My grandmother used to do them with me in Italian, and I am continuing that tradition,” she said. 

A big fact about her is she loves caffeine and her favorite thing would have to be her car. Her prized possession. 

“Some of my favorite things include coffee (I am obsessed), and this might sound silly however my car. I just recently purchased a bright red civic, and I love her dearly. Her name is Rosie and – fun fact – it is a goal of mine to learn how to drive with a manual transmission,” she said. 

Aside from French, another big part of her life would have to be her two-year old dog, Nittany. 

“My family and I got her during my junior year at Penn State, and she has become my best friend over the years. She is a mini Australian Shepherd mixed with a Blue Heeler,” she said.

She is excited to continue her time at Bellefonte and can’t wait to see what our little town has to offer her. 

“I once more would like to express my sincere appreciation for this opportunity to be able to join such an amazing school community. I am beyond excited to continue growing the French language within the school, and I am looking forward to making more connections and supporting each and every one of my kiddos. Stop by Room 150 to say bonjour,” she said.