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Longtime Hartland Instructor Loves to Play With Kids of All Ages

Jan Doke, who has been with Hartland Community Education for 24 years, is Hartland Schools "Person of the Month" for January, 2014.

About Jan

I have been at Hartland Community Education for almost 24 years now. Currently, I coach gymnastics, tennis, soccer, pickleball and volleyball. I also organize family fun pickleball night, work morning Latchkey at Lakes Elementary and in the summer I teach “Safe Town." I went to Macomb Community College and Wayne State University.

I have a wonderful family who supports me with all I do. They are never surprised when I come home and say that I am teaching another new sport. They know I can never say NO to playing with little kids and teaching them new skills. That is me through and through! My husband Paul and I have been married for 33 years now. He hates it when I say something and he was just going to say that. It’s so funny, I love it. We do that to each other all the time. My husband and two sons all graduated from Hartland High School. Paul ll has a Physics degree from U of M and Eric has a degree in Applied Sciences with an emphasis on diesel motors from the University of Northwestern Ohio. Paul lives here in Michigan and Eric is married and lives in England.

Paul and I love to camp and are planning a trip to Montana this summer. I would love to see some national parks plus watch a few baseball games in different stadiums. We traveled to England twice last year and we would like to go back to visit family. My bucket list might be to see the Lions play in London next October, see a tennis match at Wimbledon and add another country to our list - pretty exciting for someone who has only flown once in her life before last year. 

Most memorable memories of Hartland Schools

I have many memorable moments working here in Hartland. I love seeing kids get new skills, especially when it comes very hard for them. Their smiles just make my day. Funny story from the gym - in gymnastics we climb the ladder and ring the bell. When the kids ring the bell they say what their favorite food is. They all know that I love pizza.

A few years back a little boy climbed the ladder and said it was beer time. We all laughed, it was so funny but the little boy’s mom wanted to crawl under the table. She eventually recovered and said he gets that from his dad. I should have been writing a book all these years on funny things kids say. 

Why do you stay in Hartland?

I am still here because I love to play with kids of all ages. At five feet even, I’m often thought of as still a kid. Starting from when I first started working at the Hartland daycare back in 1989 working just 3 hours a day, to the present day of working all the different activities, I have a great time here. Thanks for having me.

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