WEAC members are finalists for Presidential Teaching Awards

Two WEAC members are among state finalists for the 2018 Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching (PAEMST), considered the highest honor bestowed by the U.S. government for mathematics and science teachers. Congratulations to Alicia Korth of the New London School District and Rebecca Saeman of Middleton-Cross Plains.

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Sun Prairie’s Sandra Kowalczyk is national Middle Level Educator of the Year

Sandra Kowalczyk, a reading specialist at Patrick Marsh Middle School in Sun Prairie and a member of WEAC Region 6, will be awarded the Association for Middle Level Education (AMLE) 2018 Educator of the Year Award. The award, supported by the AMLE Foundation Fund, recognizes outstanding practitioners in middle level education — those who have made a significant impact on the lives of young adolescents through exemplary leadership, vision, and advocacy.

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Genoa City’s Mary Ellen Kanthack wins Award for Teaching Excellence

Genoa City teacher Mary Ellen Kanthack is the winner of a prestigious California Casualty Award for Teaching Excellence, the NEA Foundation has announced. Kanthack, who is the 2018 Wisconsin Elementary School Teacher of the Year, has implemented a wide variety of innovative approaches to education, collaborated extensively with her community on projects, and worked through her local union, WEAC Region 7, WEAC and the NEA not only to access resources but to give back to colleagues by providing valuable professional development leadership. “I am passionate about promoting NEA,” she said.

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WEAC Aspiring Educator Allison Erck wins award for future educators

Allison Erck, who is entering her senior year at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater and is a member of WEAC Region 9/Aspiring Educators, has been awarded the Jack Kinnaman Award for Future Educators. The $2,500 award was presented to her at the NEA annual meeting earlier this summer. “My goal is to teach middle school English language arts, with a classroom that is fully inclusive to all students,” said Erck, who was awarded the scholarship by the retired chapter of the National Education Association.

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Sun Prairie’s Jay Garvey Shah is winner of Presidential Award for Excellence in Teaching

WEAC Region 6 member Jay Garvey Shah, a fifth grade teacher at Creekside Elementary School in Sun Prairie, has been awarded a 2018 Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching. Shah, who has been teaching for 15 years, will be teaching sixth grade mathematics and science at the International Community School of Addis Ababa in Ethiopia next year.

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Use intrinsic motivation, not gimmicks or rewards, to inspire students, Wisconsin’s 2017 Teacher of the Year writes

Using gimmicks or rewards to get students to study or perform tasks can backfire by damaging their “innate intrinsic motivation,” Sun Prairie teacher Chris Gleason writes in a new Teacher Leader Voices blog posted this week at EdWeek.org. “I believe that we need to ‘work with’ kids and not ‘do things to’ them. We need to fan the flames of curiosity in every child and foster their love of learning,” writes the 2017 Wisconsin Teacher of the Year, who is a member of WEAC Region 6.

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Greendale High School teacher Ben Hubing is Wisconsin’s James Madison Fellow

Greendale High School (GHS) social studies teacher, Ben Hubing, a member of WEAC Region 7, has been selected as the James Madison Memorial Fellow for the state of Wisconsin. As part of the James Madison Memorial Fellow program, Hubing will spend four weeks in an upcoming summer studying the U.S. Constitution, founding fathers, and other documents significant to American Government and U.S. History at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C.

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Three WEAC members recognized for ‘helping students see differently’

Three WEAC members are being recognized by the Department of Public Instruction for having “a colossal impact” by helping students “see school in different and important ways.” Teacher Frank Juarez of Sheboygan (WEAC Region 3), Joanna Rizzotto of South Milwaukee (WEAC Region 7) and Mark Nepper of Madison (Madison Teachers Inc.) are among teachers featured in a special issue of the ConnectEd newsletter.

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Memoninee Indian educator – and WEAC member – Benjamin Grignon is state’s 2019 High School Teacher of the Year

Benjamin Grignon, teacher of traditional Menominee crafts at Menominee Indian High School in Keshena and a member of WEAC Region 3, is a Wisconsin 2019 High School Teacher of the Year. As a teacher of traditional arts, specifically Menominee arts, Grignon is unique. “I work with students not only on the art forms of our people, but the language and cultural practices that go along with these arts,” he said. “I am constantly finding opportunities to use our culture to reinforce other subjects in our school.”

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