• Hello, my name is Mr. John Westhoff and I have the pleasure of having your child as one of my students this year.

    Me in a Nutshell as Mr. Westhoff: Since forever, I have wanted to be a teacher. While my brothers played farm and constantly asked me to play – I would say no. I instead sat on a desk my mom bought me and corrected papers for hours unend. Ha! I enjoy my job and getting to work with your students.  A common question about my job is “What is your favorite part about teaching?” To this I would answer: my favorite part about teaching is during small group/collaborative time, when all of a sudden (for 5-10 minutes) I hear nothing but conversation, learning, and compromising. When this happens I know I have done my job. It takes a while to get to this ability as a young 3rd grader, so to get there we do a lot of modeling, role playing, and talking out situations. I strongly feel that school is just as much about academics as it is about learning to hear another, soak in what they are saying, and then talk about it to complete a task or situation. That is exactly what the real world is about!

    Me in a Nutshell as Dad/Husband: I am married to my awesome wife, Kristina. You may know her as the 1st grade teacher, Mrs. Westhoff, here at Tea. This past spring, on April 14th, we welcomed Rory Charles into the world. Our life as we know it has of course changed, but all for the better J Mrs. Westhoff is the head volleyball coach for the high school team here at Tea. She stays busy with that during the summer/fall so I spent a lot of my summer polishing my Dad skills with Rory. I know he is a good kid because if I can keep him happy and content, anyone can! He likes mirrors, naps, eating, sucking his fingers, and makes faces with us. We will be his mom’s 2 biggest fans this fall during volleyball season!

    We enjoy going for walks, tennis, golf, and visiting family/friends when we have the time. We also enjoy some USD and SDSU games. Mrs. Westhoff grew up in Brookings so she is a Jackrabbit as heart, while I graduated from USD and will always be a Yote. 

    Me in a Nutshell as Coach Westhoff: Here at Tea Area I stay busy during the winter coaching middle school girls basketball with Mr. Binde.

    Me in a Nutshell as John: While I’m not busy doing all these things listed above, I still find myself need to stay busy! During the spring/summer I enjoy landscaping and taking care of the lawn. The farm boy inside of me needs to be outside! During the summer, I work part time at Nursery Wholesalers in Tea watering plants and unloading/loading trucks. 

    I grew up in LeMars, Ia on a farm just outside of town. My 2 brothers still live back home helping my parents with the operation - cattle, hogs, chickens, alfalfa, beans, and corn. I am an uncle to 5 fun and energetic nieces and nephews. Nothing is better than hearing them yell “Johnny!” as I pull into the farm. Your child will hear a lot about that part of my life as I try to tie it into teaching life lessons, science, math, and real life situations. (And remind them that being mad about “taking out the trash” is not the worst chore they could have!) My sister, Erica, lives here in town now working at Denny Sanford Premier Center in the management/tickets departments. She gets as much Rory time as she can!

     I am excited to meet your student, work with them, laugh, persevere, engage, have fun, and collaborate in their learning to make them not only know something, but understand that something.