Teacher of the year: Let us lead

New Haven’s teacher of the year put on a “phosphorescent” shirt and lit up an Omni Hotel ballroom with a challenge to a school reform crowd: Let teachers be leaders without forcing them to leave the classroom, the New Haven Independent reports. David Low, the New Haven Federation of Teachers’ vice president of high schools and this year’s teacher of the year, made those remarks Thursday night at the opening session of the 7th annual Yale School of Management’s Education Leadership Conference at the Omni. Low took part in an opening panel moderated by state education chief Stefan Pryor. Low took a seat on stage in the ballroom beside Michael Sharpe, CEO of FUSE, a Hartford charter school operator; Rae Ann Knopf, director of the Connecticut Council for Education Reform; and Steven Adamowski, a former Hartford superintendent…

Read the full story

…Read More

Online Teacher of the Year: Individualized instruction is key

Fetzer said she “jumped at the chance” to begin teaching online.

Through a combination of blended learning, individualized instruction, and enthusiasm, online biology teacher Leslie Fetzer’s dedication to helping her special-needs students develop core learning skills contributed to her new title as the 2012 National Online Teacher of the Year for K-12 education.

Fetzer, who teaches in the North Carolina Virtual Public School (NCVPS) Occupational Course of Study (OCS) blended learning program, teaches special-needs students in grades 10-12. Students are paired with an exceptional children’s teacher in a classroom, as well as with a content specialist teacher online.

Fetzer said that teaching online lets her instantly individualize instruction for her students, and she is able to personalize lessons to appeal to each student’s own areas of interest or preferences. Access to different online tools and technologies is an added benefit.…Read More

Teacher of the Year: Education ‘must be learner-centered’

President Obama honors the 2010 National Teacher of the Year, Sarah Brown Wessling.
President Obama honors the 2010 National Teacher of the Year, Sarah Brown Wessling.

Facebook and digital video are among the many technology-based tools that Sarah Brown Wessling uses to engage her students—but just as important as that, it was her passion for helping every child succeed and her belief that instruction should be “learner-centered” that led to her selection as the 2010 National Teacher of the Year.

Wessling, a high school English teacher from Iowa, was recognized by President Barack Obama as the nation’s top teacher in an April 29 ceremony in the White House Rose Garden.

“Whether teaching basic writing to at-risk freshmen, or literary theory to Advanced Placement seniors, Sarah writes: ‘I see a story in every learner, unique and yearning to be read.’ That’s why she creates individualized podcasts for each student with extensive feedback on their papers, prompting one parent to report that his own writing had improved just by listening to Sarah’s comments to his daughter,” the president said.…Read More