My name is Brydie Criswell. I am married to a wonderful man who shares my vision of peaceful country life. I have spent the past 17 years working as a special education teacher and a Board Certified Behavior Analyst. I began my career in the fall of 2000, after gaining my Master’s degree in special education with specialization in learning disabilities and behavioral disorders. From 2003 to 2008, I worked as a teacher for K-6 students exhibiting behavior challenges. From 2008 to March of 2017, I worked as a Behavior Analyst, serving kids and teachers across the Iowa City Community School District. While I loved my work and the kids I served, I dreamed of a life where I could raise and teach children in an environment that was free of stress, pressure, and instead filled with child centered learning. So, on March 11th, 2017, my family and I took a leap of faith and I resigned. Soon after, we found the property of our dreams and The Good Earth was born!
My husband and I have 3 children. First, Henry, who was born in 2009, is a nature enthusiast who is always finding frogs, bugs, and edible plants. He is very kind and friendly and is always ready for a good adventure. He loves other kids and loves to make others happy. Violet is my middle child. She was born in 2010 and loves to learn. She is very outgoing and makes friends easily. She loves animals, gardening, and is pretty much my mini-me! Munro is our “caboose”. He was born in 2013 and was officially my first full time student. He is super sweet, funny, and kind. He is a good friend to his preschool buddies and gets along with everyone. My husband, Brent, is a 5th grade teacher at Lincoln Elementary in Iowa City. He is an incredible teacher and family man. He and I are both very excited about this new chapter in our lives. We currently offer nature-based summer camps at The Good Earth, where kids can build relationships with people, animals and nature. Last but not least, we have 2 canine babies that are very much part of our family. Ollie is our big goofy lab mix. He is super friendly and sweet, and loves to roam the property. He is in absolute heaven out on the farm. He is also very, very kid friendly and loves to play ball, give kisses, and play dress up with my daughter. Ruby is our little girl pup. She is a terrier mix. She loves chasing Ollie, playing ball and wrestling with her human siblings… and snuggling with me.
Our family is rooted in the Christian faith. We attend the North Liberty United Methodist Church where we are fairly active. I sing in the church band and my husband helps teach “Epic”, our high school youth group. We work very hard to teach our children the value of hard work, forgiveness, unconditional love, and respect for one another and for the earth. I hope to carry those values into each day with the children attending The Good Earth as well!
If you are interested, here is a link to an article published by the Iowa Department of Education on some work I was involved with in the Iowa City Schools. I am also happy to provide any references or resume information that may be of interest to you. https://www.educateiowa.gov/sites/files/ed/documents/April2015EEC.pdf