Project-Based Learning Leads to Big Wins

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Marshall FFA wins award

Problem solving, teamwork and presentation skills are the sorts of benefits students can receive through the hands-on, real-world instruction of project-based learning. Lessons learned from project-based agriculture classes recently paid off big for four Missouri FFA chapters. They each won top prizes at a national competition in Indianapolis. The Marshall chapter was recognized as the Read More

Leaving a Legacy — Two Missouri Teachers of the Year

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Carol Reimann and Beth Davey

As a teacher, you may wonder whether your daily lessons, student engagement and hours (weeks, years) of preparation will leave a lasting impression on the children in your classroom. Remember the words of the Dalai Lama: “Just as ripples spread out when a single pebble is dropped into water, the actions of individuals can have Read More

Opportunities and Challenges – Teaching Gifted Students

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Students with goggles in science class

The public may think of gifted classes as a room full of super-smart prodigies who excel in school on their way to the Ivy League. But teachers of gifted programs and parents of gifted kids know that their students are much more than really bright. They are culturally, racially, and socially diverse, they may feel Read More

To Overcome Challenges, Build Relationships

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Scott Clithero

In his nine years of teaching, Scott Clithero has learned a profound lesson: You have to build relationships with people before they will listen. “I never considered myself a people person,” Scott said. “I was more interested in information itself than in how the information was packaged. I soon realized that before you can teach, Read More

Shannon Waldo, Billings

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Shannon Waldo's 5th and 6th grade band

You might think that after 19 years of teaching, anybody would feel like a classroom veteran. Not Shannon Waldo, who teaches K-12 music in Billing R-IV. “Sometimes I feel like such a newbie,” Shannon said. “I have to remind myself that I’m a veteran teacher.” Shannon’s background in music is deep. She began learning piano Read More

Bethany Prenger, Cole Co. R-V

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Bethany Prenger and student candling egg

A gaggle of freshmen clattered into Bethany Prenger’s agriculture science class on a misty Monday afternoon in Eugene. After a quick rundown of the schedule for the next day’s field trip, the kids got started on the day’s assignment: checking on the eggs they were incubating and expecting to hatch in three days. It was Read More

Casey Hassell, Crawford Co. R-1

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Casey Hassell in front of class

Casey Hassell’s parents always said she should be a teacher. It took a while, but Casey finally agreed. “I was stubborn and thought, ‘No, I want to do this instead,” she said, as she headed to college to earn a bachelor’s degree in mass communications with an emphasis in corporate video. Casey worked in television, Read More

Patrick Hemmingsen, Raymore-Peculiar

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Hemmingsen with girl at computer

We all know someone who has had a passion for his or her chosen career dating back to middle or high school. That’s Patrick Hemmingsen, the science department chair and AP and IB chemistry teacher at Raymore-Peculiar High School. He loved biology as a student, and his AP biology teacher in high school encouraged him Read More

Karen Pace, Salem

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Karen Pace with class.

If imitation really is the sincerest form of flattery, Karen Pace should be feeling pretty good. Two of her fellow math teachers at Salem High School were her students when they were in school. Karen’s philosophy in the classroom no doubt affected their choice to teach math. “You have to make math interesting so that Read More

Diana Haynes, North Kansas City

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Diana Haynes with students

For generations, people have grown up and joined the family business. In a way, that’s what Diana Haynes did when she chose a career in education. “My dad spent 38 years training teachers at Missouri Western,” says Diana, who is in her 27th year of teaching. “My mom was a school nurse. My grandmother taught Read More