The Silver Falls School District honored its dedicated and hardworking teaching staff during Teacher Appreciation Week, May 2-6.
“As a group, Silver Falls has really outstanding teachers who are committed to going the extra mile for our students,” said Superintendent Andy Bellando. “I can’t thank them enough and am so appreciative of their hard work and dedication.”
We asked students and principals to tell us about a teacher who exemplifies the intrinsic qualities that make our teachers and district so special.
“While we could share marvelous information about, literally, every staff member at Evergreen, the real story is how the total staff, EVERYONE OF THEM, has pitched in, gone way above and beyond, demonstrated commitment, flexibility and dedication this year,” said Bob and Heidi Ostrom, co-principals of Evergreen School. “This has been a challenging year with staff changes, numerous subs, high numbers of sick students, and staff with serious health concerns. Our staff has been outstanding!”
Mark Twain Middle School
Mark Twain Principal Nancy Griffith tells us that language arts teacher Eryn Willow truly loves her kids and it is reciprocated. High school students can be found returning to visit year after year because she inspired and connected with them as people.
“[Willow] believes that until their needs are met, students really aren’t ready or capable of learning. So she feeds them. Instead of papers she has a file drawer full of snacks. I wouldn’t be able to count the number of backpacks she has bought over the years or students she has personally taken school shopping. She has a closet full of school supplies. She collects hand me-downs from other families to make sure her students have jeans, shoes, coats, etc.
“She is a champion for the underdog and makes sure all students in her classes are heard and have an opportunity to express themselves. Her teaching curriculum is fluid, always changing to meet the individual needs of her students. You will not find her lessons in a textbook. But you will find books – her classroom is filled with a library of books that speak to the kids – all of which she has purchased herself. Books are her passion and it is contagious. Ms. Willow’s classroom is a wild, wacky, kid-centered place that passionately creates lifelong learners and readers.”
Silver Crest Elementary
Silver Crest K-2 grade teacher Abby Greene was recognized as this year’s SFSD teacher of the year. Here’s what some of her students had to say when asked what they like best about her:
“She’s really fun and she calls us ‘yahoos.’” — Eliah Blair, grade 2
“She wears tie-dye and I like the books she reads.” — Lohri Underwood, grade 2
“I like her nicknames and she’s funny.” — Michael Nieto, grade 2
“She’s good at math.” — Kamilla Batyrkovo, grade 2
Silver Crest Kindergarten teacher Christine Gunther’s students told us:
“She’s nice. She’s helpful. She teaches us the alphabet and I love her.” — Riley Titu and Arayha Taylor.
Silver Crest teacher Sean Pool’s students shared:
“He explains math very well and he helps us.” — Melissa Johnston, grade 6
“He’s funny and he explains stuff well. When we answer wrong, he makes us feel better and makes us laugh.” — Venessa Arce, grade 7
Teacher Sandra Buchheit teaches a first and second combination. Her students told us:
“She’s so nice and she lets us do really fun art projects. I like the way she teaches. She helps everyone. One time we did a math test, but it wasn’t really a test. At the end it said it was just for fun…April Fools!” — Ella Haury, grade 2
Fourth grade teacher Lisa Freauff’s students shared:
“She’s good at math and if we get our work done she lets us have extra recess.” — Ella Mantie, grade 4
A student of teacher Dawn Roth told us:
“She has a way of saying things so you know she means what she says, but she’s not yelling at you. She helps me with my life.” — Micah Kuenzi, grade 7
“Having Helen Plov teach PE this year has been amazing,” said Scotts Mills Principal Kirstin Jorgenson. “She has motivated and inspired our entire school to run from Scotts Mills to Rio de Janeiro this year.”
Some of Mrs. Plov’s third and fourth grade students told us:
“Ms. Plov is my favorite PE teacher ever . . . I LOVE Ms. Plov,” – Wylie Blamer.
“Ms. Plov is so kind. She makes the games fun, but she makes it easy for us because she can talk loud.” – Else Evans
“Ms. Plov, you have made me fast and you have made me get moving and physical.” – Jordan Drescher
“Ms. Plov has done a really good job of encouraging us to run to Rio.” – Adelle Otter
Ms. Plov is the best teacher I ever had. Also, she has done a lot for us and I love PE with her. — Hailey Van Vorst