October 12, 2017School: Richard Elementary School
Years at Richard: 1
Nominated by: Mary MacDonald-Barrett, principal
“Anne Lesha, our new kindergarten teacher, worked hard with the help of our other kindergarten teachers to prepare the classroom for her students. As a new member of our staff, she hit the ground running. She conveys high expectations for her young students and has a classroom environment that is warm and friendly.
What do you enjoy most about teaching?
I love how genuinely eager young children are to learn. Their natural curiosity and enthusiasm is contagious and inspiring. Even with the smallest accomplishment, they get so excited and have such a strong sense of pride for their success. I also love inspiring children to think in different ways and to explore their passions and curiosities from a young age.
Describe a teaching accomplishment you’re proud of or a “teachable moment” you experienced.
I love finding creative ways to teach concepts. What works for one child, may not work for another, so I work hard to identify teaching strategies that work for each student in my classroom. Exploring these different options alongside my students is something that I feel is so important in teaching. One of my favorite teaching moments is when a student grasps a concept that first baffled them. It is such an amazing feeling for a teacher. More importantly, it helps the student realize that persistence pays off and that it’s okay to approach learning, or any challenge, in a different way.
Name a book or person that has inspired you or your teaching.
Just as we can learn so much from children, we also can learn a bit from books written for children. “What Do You Do with an Idea,” by Kobi Yamada, is a story that has inspired my teaching. It also has inspired my students to be creative and to appreciate the value of an idea and the importance of nurturing one’s ideas. Its illustrations are wonderful and its message is powerfully universal. I would recommend it to anyone, young or old!
“If a child can’t learn the way we teach, maybe we should teach the way they learn.”
— Ignacio ‘Nacho’ Estrada