TEACHER OF THE YEAR
Mr. Michael Scarano
The reason I chose to become a teacher certainly cannot be limited to just one reason. I would have to say that my mother also working in the field of education helped. I had many positive experiences working in her self-contained exceptional children’s class. However, many of my experiences differ so much from the experiences of my mother that my answer cannot be so simplistic. I did not decide to join the teaching profession until after I graduated from my undergraduate studies.
Although it was over ten years ago, I remember the day like it was yesterday. I followed my mother’s suggestion to put in an application to become a substitute for Buffalo Public Schools. To be frank, I was not excited. Unable to find a job in a highly competitive communications market, it was kind of a way to make ends meet. I got a call from Lafayette High School in Buffalo to substitute. Lafayette was an inner-city school in a poverty-stricken city. Honestly the call scared me more than it excited me. I checked in and walked to the exceptional children’s math class. On a humorous note, I put my name on the board and waited for the students to enter. When they walked in and starting calling me Mr. Scarano, and I turned around looking for my father! I could unequivocally say after the end of that class I knew I would be going into the profession. I continued to work at Lafayette throughout the year. I held several semi-permanent positions. While working at this school I soon realized the good qualities of teaching can be mixed with many difficulties. Lafayette is a school that faces a great deal of challenges. Although I credit the experience as priceless, I made the choice to work with younger children. I felt I could create a more positive influence on children before the teenage years. The next year I enrolled in a local university to receive my Master’s of Education. Although I did well academically, I always preferred working with children more than work in the university. I completed the courses and student teaching, and started my career with Harnett County Schools.
My greatest accomplishments have come from working with the children at Boone Trail Elementary School. My classroom remains heavily focused on mathematics as well as literacy. I have changed the mindset of many young people regarding mathematics. I meet with children in math groups daily, using differentiated math instruction. I do not let struggling math students “blend in.” As a school system we have various ways to identify struggling readers. However, math interventions are systemically less prevalent. Knowing my students will succeed facing years of future mathematical instruction is a proud teaching moment. My hard work has helped many children move on to high school without the fear of the gatekeeping classes of algebra one and two.
In conclusion, a variety of experiences have helped move me in the direction of education. However, my greatest accomplishment is not about me it is about the children I have positively influenced. It warms my heart to hear that the children from my first year teaching are attending college or joining the armed forces. I look forward to hearing more about the positive impact my classroom has had on our younger generation.
TEACHER OF THE YEAR
TEACHER Assistant OF THE YEAR
Mrs. Melissa Burkholder
My name is Melissa Burkholder. I have been chosen to be Teacher Assistant of the Year 2014-2015. I am excited and overwhelmed to represent Boone Trail Elementary School.
I consider it an honor to be your Teacher Assistant of the Year. I look forward each and everyday to be able to come to work and see the faces of those precious children, for they are our future leaders. Thank you for giving me such an honor.
TEACHER ASSISTANT OF THE YEAR