Since joining the CIU faculty eight years ago, Dr. Hoekstra has served students on campus, online, and internationally, teaching in Mexico, the Dominican Republic, Haiti, and China. One of her favorite courses is the International Teaching Practicum, which involves taking teams of CIU teacher education students to some of these countries for cross-cultural observation and teaching experiences. Her teaching course load includes child development, inquiry-based learning, teaching with a biblical worldview, and nature-based learning. She enjoys designing courses that emphasize practical application of these concepts.
Dr. Hoekstra strives to inspire future teachers for teaching with excellence and passion, always remembering they will be teaching students rather than a curriculum. She is intentional about modeling the teaching strategies her students are learning, so that they will begin their individual teaching careers knowing how to apply sound research-based practices in their own teaching contexts. Because relationships form the basis of effective teaching, she also enjoys her role as academic advisor, seeing herself as a mentor and model.
Dr. Hoekstra has recently contributed two chapters (Inquiry in Science Teaching and Promoting Resilience) to a book, Distinctively Christian: A Christ-centered Approach to Early Childhood Teaching and Learning, edited by Dr. Milt Uecker, published by Wheaton Press.