ARTS, MEDIA & ENTERTAINMENT
Did your upbringing or family history have an influence on your career choice?
Yes; my mom was a teacher, and as a child I always wanted to emulate her teaching skills. I went to a
sleepaway camp as a camper and then became a counselor for 4- and 5-year-olds. I found that I loved
working with these young children in a 24/7 capacity. Those years at camp became the influential factor in
my deciding to declare education as my major in college.
Do you have any hobbies or side ventures that provide enjoyment or fulfillment?
I am currently practicing yoga six days. I am also learning tai chi and am part of a weekly reiki healing circle.
I am also learning the ancient craft of making mica clay pottery bowls. I still enjoy designing jewelry, mainly
bracelets, using knotting techniques and semi-precious stones, and I make sure to continue honing my
passion for writing by involving myself in that practice daily.
hough she hadn’t envisioned herself becoming
an educator someday, Renee Danette Petrola
certainly excelled in that role for more than
40 years as a teacher in the Mount Sinai School District.
More than just a talking head delivering rote material in
front of a classroom, she made a sincere effort to nurture
the literary talents and communication skills of sixth-grade
students in her creative writing classes. Beyond teaching
key elements of literature, Ms. Danette Petrola helped
her students to discover and develop their individual
strengths, encouraging them to enter poetry and writing
competitions. In addition to working in an academic
capacity and collaborating with special education teachers
on occasion, she also served as a conflict mediator for the
district before her recent retirement. Since leaving the
education field, she’s taken her life in a new direction and
followed a passion that lay dormant for years.
Under the name Renee Danette, she has penned and
published three books of poetry, the last two of which are
available online for purchase. Her debut, “Woman on the
Edge of Time,” was self-published in the year immediately
following her retirement and preceded the March 2015
release of “Primitive Dancer.” Her latest work, “The
Healing Tree,” is a deeply personal collection celebrating
growth, spirituality and the beauty of discovering one’s
shared humanity. In this book she states, “Through the
writing of poetry I am able to recognize my indomitable
life-force and pass some of that encouraging energy on
to others.” It is this spark of inspiration, this inexplicable
connection to both the human and divine elements within
that has been a cornerstone of her success. To read more
about her background, visit her on the Web at www.reneedanette.com
, and head over towww.amazon.com
pick up your copy of one of her books.
Mount Sinai, NY