We have received hundreds of nominations for teachers in our viewing area. We would like to honor every single one but unfortunately we cannot. Below are some nominees we feel should be recognized as Teacher of the Month Honorable Mentions.
Amy Brace, Physical Education
Sarah Moore Green Magnet School
Amy Brace is an elementary physical education teacher whose dedication to the welfare of her students goes well beyond physical conditioning. Leading by example, she tries to impart to her students qualities such as compassion, fairness, selflessness, honesty, and respect for every person. While this can be said of most good teachers, Amy stands out because of where she chooses to teach-an older, urban school where most of the students are poor, minority children with few advantages. Many of her students come from single parent homes; often there is little parental concern or involvement in school matters. Although Amy has had many opportunities to move to "better" schools, in "nicer neighborhoods," she has steadfastly remained with her urban students. She devotes much of her off-duty time to studying the special problems of urban education, and is close to completion of her Ph.D. in education at UT. She aspires to improve the educational system by making her colleagues and the general public aware of the special concerns and needs of urban children. Toward this end, she has recently assumed a coordinator position among several urban magnet schools, and looks forward to setting an example for excellence in urban education as a school principal, should the opportunity arise.
Hardin Valley Elementary School
Rachel is a wonderful teacher. She has been teaching for many years, and although she is young, she is amazing at her job. I am her roommate and I see her everyday and I see how much she enjoys being with her kids and the other teachers as well. She spends hours each night planning out lesson plans and fun activities for the students. She also goes out of her way to make her kids happy. In fact, just this past week, we went to Pet Smart so she could try and find a golden retriever picture frame for a student whose dog had been ran over recently. She's a very generous and loyal person, teacher and friend and I think she deserves this award because of all the hard work and love she puts into her job. Knox County is lucky to have her as a teacher!
Tennessee School For The Deaf
Donna is a very caring teacher, all of her students are not just deaf but mentally challenged as well. She takes the time to help the kids to learn to the best of their ability. Assuring that each one can be a productive member of society. At Halloween she has a party for the kids at her house, purchasing most of the food and goodies for the kids. She plans field trips that help the kids learn about the subjects they are studying. She makes learning fun and exciting. She also keeps the parents informed as to any special help the kids need and tries to help the parents find that help. Donna really loves her job and the kids and she shows it in many ways. In my
eyes Donna is not just the teacher of the month but the teacher of the year.
Rennay Beaty, 3rd grade
Carpenters Elementary School
1. She cares about her students.
2. She wants to see them succeed and works to make it happen.
3. She goes above and beyond regular teaching to try and find new ways to help the idea click with the students.
4. She loves her kids so much, that she had them sing in her wedding.
5. She has been so in tune with her kids that at one point in her teaching career she even had to perform the Heimlich maneuver.
6. She sees her job as a calling from God. She does her job better than most. It comes so natural to her. It's obvious teaching is certainly a part of her calling.
Rebecca Henegar, 4th grade
John Hay Elementary School
We want to nominate Mrs. Henegar because:
I - Integrity - Mrs. Henegar treats her students with the utmost of integrity.
T - Think - Mrs. Henegar strives to have her students think in many different ways in order to find solutions to academic problems when presented to them.
E - Expectation - Mrs. Henegar has so many high expectations for her students.
A - Awesome - Mrs. Henegar is an awesome role model for any teacher.
C - Compassionate and Caring - We could not just pick one trait for "C". Mrs. Henegar is compassionate about her job and her students. Mrs. Henegar cares that all of her students succeed and goes the extra mile(s) for them.
H - Helping - Mrs. Henegar is always there for her students and lends that extra helping hand at any time.
These are just a few of the reasons that Mrs. Henegar is the best teacher and truly deserves this honor. We could not possibly list all of her good traits. We just know that she has done lots for so many students and truly cares that they succeed. Thank you so much for this opportunity to express our gratitude in having this teacher touch our lives.
Mrs. Dawn Patelke, Chorus
Union County High School
1. Mrs. Patelke has been a teacher for over twenty years, but every day she is able to bring something new and enjoyable into her classroom. She's always open to new ideas on how to prepare her choir students to be good singers. She's willing to try many things, and always makes things that seem hard easier and fun.
2. Although she is a wonderful teacher, Mrs. Patelke has had to teach two different subjects - chorus AND band. Both of these classes have to put on shows for the high school, and sometimes other events and schools. A lot of us don't know how she does it, because she doesn't have any teacher's assistant at all! She puts it all together and trains both classes expertly several times a year for different shows, all with a smile and something funny to say.
3. Mrs. Patelke is also a good teacher in that she knows when there's time for having fun and when there's time to get down and work. She almost always lets the class have some time to talk and 'goof off', but she knows where the line is drawn and always integrates class work with fun.
4. Mrs. Patelke sacrifices a great deal of her time away from school to help the school and her students. She shows up at optional events, performs just as if a local football game were a presidential inauguration, and barely breaks a sweat.
5. Even though she is a music teacher, when our school did week and bi-weekly essays, she showed that she could have been an English teacher, too! She individually graded and made remarks on each student's essay to help them become better writers and have better scores. She was always encouraging and never defeatist.
6. This reason is more personal to me, but also very special. The morning of our Christmas Concert, I was almost late for school. As my father was driving me down the road, he had a flat tire and pulled in a gas station. To my surprise, Mrs. Patelke pulled in behind him. She didn't know who he was, or that it was me. She was going to be late to school herself, but she took the time to ask if he needed help. When she saw me, she was very surprised, but offered me a ride to school - that way, I didn't miss the concert. She has also offered rides to other students in need.
It is for all these reasons and more that I think Mrs. Patelke should be the teacher of the month.
Pam Walden, Principal
East LaFollette Elementary
1. Caring. Cares about the students, the teachers, and the community above all else.
2. Dedicated. Spends long hours at the school working to improve the quality of education for students who live in the poorer area of our community.
3. Loving. With one of the highest special ed populations in the school system, Mrs. Walden always takes time to help students who are less fortunate than others.
4. Positive. Mrs. Walden does not yell or scream at the students, but instead tries to solve problems while still administering discipline.
5. Great Listener. Always takes advice from teachers and community leaders on how to make her school a better place.
6. Established. Mrs. Walden has been a well respected teacher at East LaFollette for 11 years and is working on her first year as principal.
Aileen Beeler, 8th grade science
Horace Maynard Middle School
1.My mom truly loves every child she teaches
2.She has never once complained about her job, she looks forward to going to work and being with her students.
3.She makes sure her students understand everything. She teaches science so she spends a lot of time preparing experiments and activities for her students to do so they fully understand what they are being taught.
4.When we are out sometimes we see her students and they always run up to give her a hug or tell them they miss her class, so you can really see how she affects them.
5.My mom attends out of school activities like basketball and football games that her students play in when they ask her, she's always willing to go the extra mile for the kids who may not have someone from home to come support them.
6.My mom has helped so many of her kids with personal home problems. They all feel like they can go to her when they really need help bc she is always willing to do what she can to better her children's lives.
Mrs. Sandra Murdock, 3rd and 4th grade
Covenant Baptist Academy
1. Due to lack of teaching staff Mrs. Murdock is also the principal and administrator of the school. She is currently teaching 3-4 th grade class as well as being the principal of the school.
2. She is always dedicated to being the first one there and the last one to leave, she puts her students and entire school 1st. even when she isn't feeling well.
3. She is a godly woman that is respected in her position by all students, she doesn't demand respect she gets it from her life she lives.
4. Mrs. Murdock has 68 children that are like her own, she will even tell you that.
5. Teaching isn't a job to her it is a life. I wish more people would be an example to our kids like her.
6. I think she needs a laugh! Really she has faced a lot of difficult this year and I think the tickets for her class would bring a smile to her face, its about time because she spends her life trying to make others laugh, and learn.
Lisa Danner, 3rd grade
Burchfield Elementary School
1. She is a good teacher
2. She helps put on my braces so I can walk
3. She helps me to learn all the things I need to know like spelling reading
4. She takes good care of me
5. She inspires me
6. She helps me with my math
Susan Humphrey, K-* Music and Art
Crab Orchard and Pine View Elementary Schools
My name is Scott Humphrey and the teacher I am nominating is Susan Humphrey. She is the Music and Art Teacher at Crab Orchard and Pine View Elementary Schools in Cumberland County. Six reasons why I am nominating her are as follows:
1. She works tirelessly for each of her students since coming to Cumberland County in the mid 1990's. Many of her students have gone on to compete in state and national music competitions.
2. She plans not only one but two large Christmas and end of the year programs for both schools she is at.
3. She cares for all of her students and takes time after school to tutor them if they are getting behind academically
4. She has a true passion for her work in music and art and has a passion for it back to when she was a child
5. She also assists other teachers with projects for both schools not related to music or art.
6. She is definitely one of the teachers who has been behind the scenes that makes a lot of what happens each school year happen.
To add to this, she also is a great mother to our 14 year old daughter who she taught in elementary school who is now a freshman in high school. Susan has never hardly been recognized for her work and I think this would be great for her.
Thank you WATE for doing this kind of an award recognition for the teachers of our area!
Byron Booker, English as a Second Language (ESL)
Central High School
1. Mr. Booker exemplifies the teaching ideals of caring, leadership, and imparting knowledge. He is the English as a Second Language (ESL) teacher for Central High School. This fall, Central became the "cluster" for all ESL students from Gibbs, Fulton, Halls, and Austin East High Schools. Mr. Booker is an excellent teacher - caring, accepting, and encouraging. These characteristics make him a positive role model for the many diverse students he teaches.
2. Mr. Booker teaches English to 38 students who come from many different countries. He is capable of teaching English to all these students although they have different levels of understanding and speak many different native languages.
3. Mr. Booker personalizes the classroom lesson for each child. During a class period, students work on individualized lessons or in small groups. Although the students are working on different lessons, there is a hum of productivity in his classroom that is very unusual to see with such a diverse population of learners.
4. Mr. Booker has produced a classroom newsletter with the assistance of his students. The newsletter is distributed to the Central High School staff and to ESL parents in order to keep everyone informed about ESL classroom activities, challenges, and successes. His efforts and the efforts of his students help the other students see ESL kids as an important part of the school.
5. Mr. Booker believes in each of his students and convinces them that they will succeed. Many of the ESL students speak no English at all when they enroll with Mr. Booker. With each student, Mr. Booker starts teaching at the student's individual level of understanding and helps them progress as far as possible.
6. Mr. Booker has an extremely accepting nature. He makes all his students feel comfortable and welcomed. He makes the diversity of the classroom a positive aspect for all enrolled. His students are very fortunate indeed to have him as a role model.
Ronald Rogers, 9-12 Band
Farragut High School
1. Mr. Rogers cares about the integrity of his program and pushes students to be their best.
2. He has led his students to many of the highest ratings in band competitions.
3. He works long hours during the summer and after school to get his band performance the best it can be.
4. He includes ALL children in his program.
5. He never gives up on students.
6. He generates a camaraderie in the band that provides a group to belong to and peers who support each other and stay out of trouble because they like Mr. Rogers so much they wouldn't want to disappoint him.
Mrs. Deanna Allen, Kindergarten
Mount Olive Elementary
1. She pays attention to the good students just as well as the bad. (She doesn't discipline the child by staying on them, she compliments on how a good student is doing to get the others to do what she is wanting.)
2. She has special ways of teaching. (She gives out stars to show child's behavior and she does a lot of one on one time to help each child that needs the help.)
3. She is always smiling with a good attitude.
4. Very kind to all the parents that she sees.
5. She keeps all parents in touch about their children.
6. She is there for the children and parents 24/7 to help with any questions or concerns.
7. She treats everyone like family.