Native Jersey girl Beth Barrow always wanted to be a teacher. Inspired by her mom, who taught instrumental music for 25 years, Beth would set up her stuffed animals for a lesson or a story. In high school, she was a teacher’s assistant in a local elementary school for her senior project. In addition to teaching fourth grade at SSSAS for 29 years, Beth has served as the fourth grade team leader and the grade brigade committee co-chair, directed the Eco Adventures summer camp, and coached JV lacrosse. Beth is seriously passionate about the Philadelphia Eagles and gives her class an extra ten minutes of recess when they win. She claims Super Bowl LII was the third best day of her life. Also at the top of her list is marrying husband Chuck and having daughter Ali ’23, who just committed to play D1 soccer at the Naval Academy. Beth loves spending time with Ali—watching her play soccer, shopping together, and laughing at the jokes she doesn’t get. To relax she reads, walks their goldendoodle, Moose, and snuggles up with their cat, Squirrel. Her hobbies include photography, doing jigsaw puzzles, and traveling—and when she travels, she’s not averse a walk on the wild side. On a trip to Switzerland in 2019, Chuck signed them up for a Via Ferrata. Issued a harness, a couple of carabiners, and a tiny little helmet, they spent the day traversing the rock cliffs on a climbing route consisting of very small metal steps hammered into the rock face 2000 feet above the Swiss valley. Although she wasn’t sure she’d make it, they survived and went paragliding the next day! She finds great satisfaction in having a clean car and hitting the submit button when report cards are finished. She has watched every season of “Survivor” and “The Amazing Race” and also loves “Ted Lasso,” “Abbott Elementary,” “This Is Us,” and, although embarrassed to admit it, “The Bachelor” (and all of its iterations)! She loves all kinds of music, but especially ’80s, classic rock, and Broadway tunes. In fact, she confided that she can name pretty much any song from the ’80s in five notes or less, but wonders how come she can’t remember why she walked into the next room.
What is your most treasured object and why?
I love walking along the beach looking for shells. Since I can remember, I’ve been looking for the elusive junonia. When I find one, it will be my most treasured possession!
If you could wake up tomorrow having gained any one ability, what would it be?
I have always wanted to be able to sing. If not on Broadway, then as a backup singer for Billy Joel or Elton John. When I was little, my dream was to be a backup singer for Barry Manilow.
What are you obsessed with?
Animals! Chuck is terrified that when Ali goes to college, I’ll bring home a new pet every month. Dogs, cats, hamsters—anything soft, furry, and cuddly. My dream is to breed goldendoodles and have puppies around all the time!
What is the biggest adventure you’ve had in your life?
A college friend and I drove out to Colorado and Utah in my two-door Honda Civic the summer we were 24 years old. When I think about what we didn’t have—cell phones, Google maps, any clue how to put up the tent we borrowed—it’s a miracle we made it there and back alive!
For what in your life do you feel most grateful?
Ever since 9/11, I’ve tried to never take the gift of a regular day for granted. From that day on, I have thought of my life as “before” and “after.” Not long afterwards, snipers in our area forced us to have indoor recess and speed-walk in zig-zag patterns when changing buildings. I often tell my students that every normal, “boring” day is a blessing.
What work of art inspires you and why?
When I was in high school, I was inspired by Ansel Adams’ black and white landscape photography. I took a class and learned how to develop photos in a dark room. To this day, I love taking photographs of nature, especially when we travel. It’s a whole lot easier with digital photography, but I do miss my old camera sometimes.