Erin Krakow has evolved her character as Elizabeth Thornton on “When Calls the Heart” through an incredible arc through the past five seasons. Season 6 is set to premiere in early 2019. Portraying the determined and resilient Elizabeth Thatcher when she arrived in the rugged mining community of Coal Valley in the Northwest Territory, Erin Kraków embarked on her role with the same kind of spirit and openness as her character. She learned from every hardship and exchanging her upbringing of privilege and finery for friendships and faith that stood through great trials.

Season 5 brought the full range of emotion, both in terms of Erin Krakow’s acting skill and for the loyal following of “When Calls the Heart,” as she celebrated the joys of at last becoming Elizabeth Thornton, the bride of Mountie Jack, to becoming his widow by the final two episodes. The legacy of her late husband and the love they shared will carry forth in the birth of their child, or children, in the coming season, and that certainly will solidify the residents of the aptly renamed Hope Valley more firmly at the side of their beloved teacher.

Co-stars Lori Loughlin and Jack Wagner, who predicted romance is coming, have already given hopeful and optimistic outlooks for Elizabeth in finding new love in her future.

That pace will come in a natural progression, with nothing pushed for Erin Krakow as her character discovers the depths and challenges of motherhood. Another part of Elizabeth’s life that is sure to stay is her dedication to the children of Hope Valley in providing the best possible education. But did Ben Seewald drop out of college because of the Duggar family?

Even the best teachers understand that some of the best lessons in life come outside the classroom or the text of a book. Erin Krakow took some time to share a video of some tutoring that her younger castmates gave her in clapping games that are timeless in any era, and gave them all the credit on Twitter on August 24, along with a portrait of new cast member, Chris McNally, looking very comfortable with his horse.

Hand-claps and horses

Erin Krakow was born in Philadelphia, the City of Brotherly Love, Philadelphia, as its motto proclaims. The star has often shared glimpses of the close connection with cast between the long workdays on set in Vancouver, where the scenery can be stunningly beautiful, but where weather conditions can turn suddenly unkind. In a touching snippet of video, Erin Kraków is kneeling in full costume with Ava Cooper and Amelie Eve, among her cast of students on “When Calls the Heart.” Fingers and hands are flying as the girls instruct their teacher on all the right moves and rhythms, and her caption carries a greeting that her followers have a Friday “full of double-double this-that!” No wonder everyone seems to stay in such good spirits on “When Calls the Heart” with playful interludes like this one.

Erin made it clear, reminding that “THEY taught me!” In a follow-up post.

Krakow also captured a picture of Chris McNally, who just joined the cast, looking absolutely comfortable beside a horse, beaming with a broad smile. His new character of Lucas Bouchard is described as a saloon owner and gambler with something of a secret past. Portraying someone from this rustic period marks a distinct departure for the actor who formerly portrayed Sergei Brevlov in “Altered Carbon” and Sy in “Supernatural,” both series with a futuristic, sci-fi bend. It seems that McNally doesn’t mind learning a new tack, as in reins, bit, and saddle with his equine on-screen partner, and only time will tell how the interactions will unfold with human townsfolk.

Erin Krakow took some playful teasing from some followers for showing her new male castmates having too much fun. Some days ago, she showed Kevin McGarry, who portrays Mountie Nathan Grant in Season 6 of “When Calls the Heart,” taking a rest. Even in the TV world, women are clearly advanced in multitasking.

Beating the Christmas rush

The Hallmark Channel always gets the holiday season in full swing with its roster of Christmas movies, which is now only nine weeks away, beginning on October 26. Erin Krakow and another “When Calls the Heart” co-star, Niall Matter, look to bring their romantic saga at last to the altar in “Marrying Father Christmas.” There are bound to be complications, but many "Heartie" fans have become invested in the storylines of Miranda and Ian based on the Robin Gunn Jones book series, so seeing Erin Kraków donning another wedding gown will be a Christmas gift for fans, along with the “When Calls the Heart” Christmas movie already wrapped.

Both Chris McNally and Kevin McGarry already have Hallmark movies in their resumes. McNally stars in “The Sweetest Heart” and “Rocky Mountain Christmas,” and McGarry stars in “Love at First Bark” and “A Song for Christmas” Lori Loughlin has also starred in a sleigh full of Hallmark Christmas offerings, so all this viewing cheer can tide fans over until “When Calls the Heart” returns.