When Amelia Carr taught her kindergartners to identify words and phrases by sight, she obtained a minor assist from her siblings. In a YouTube video, the trio belts out Sister Sledge’s ’70s anthem We Are Family, with Carr demonstrating on a whiteboard how to create the word “we.”
For her ingenuity, enthusiasm and knack for producing finding out enjoyable, the College of Mary Washington alumna was a short while ago named Fairfax County Public Schools’ 2021 Remarkable New Elementary Instructor.
In her classroom at Bucknell Elementary, a Title I school in the vicinity of her hometown of Alexandria, Virginia, Carr places into exercise the lessons she realized at UMW. Navigating a around the globe pandemic and training online was tough, she claimed, but also a self-confidence and creative imagination builder. “I wanted to make my instruction as engaging as possible,” she stated of virtual learning, which lasted as a result of late February for most of her students.
Carr, who dreamed her complete lifestyle of getting to be a teacher, reported she was “instantly drawn to Mary Washington” for the reason that it was a modest, in-condition school with a potent College or university of Instruction (COE). She gained a bachelor’s degree in English with a focus in imaginative creating and a minor in social justice in 2019, and student taught in Stafford County Public Schools. Last yr, she received a master’s degree in elementary instruction from UMW.
At Mary Washington, Carr learned “wonderful mentor teachers,” like Associate Professor John Broome, who taught her culturally responsive training methods that have aided her make her classroom far more inclusive. Her college students greet each individual other in their native languages, discover about each and every other’s cultures and go through guides agent of their numerous backgrounds. They also had a say in creating classroom guidelines and norms.
“Amelia similarly cares about her students’ emotional growth and their academic advancement,” Fairfax County Community Universities claimed in a statement. “She understands kids discover ideal when they come to feel welcomed, cherished and represented.”
Assistant Professor Melissa Wells claimed that Carr’s dedication to fairness in schooling was apparent even as an undergraduate. “She advocates for all students and family members as beneficial members of her classroom learning group. Seeing her flourish in her 1st 12 months of instructing has been a joy.”
From Wells, Carr acquired arts integration methods that she incorporated into her teaching. She applied puppet theater to enable her kindergartners study how to go through, performed tambourine so they could depend beats and sang music about existence cycles and sustainability. She browse books like The Ant and the Grasshopper and The Giving Tree to enable students study to consider critically and check with thoughts. She also prepared on the web field trips with Google Earth and arranged digital lunches and perform teams to foster socialization.
Incorporating culturally responsive teaching procedures into her curriculum, Carr reads books representative of her students’ diverse backgrounds. Below, she reads Alexandra Penfold’s “All Are Welcome” to her kindergartners on the to start with day of virtual faculty past slide.
Carr completed a master’s degree in elementary schooling at Mary Washington previous 12 months. Listed here, she presents on the price of arts integration in the classroom at a Faculty of Education and learning occasion.
In addition, Carr invited virtual visitor speakers, like a veterinarian, entomologist, substantial school soccer mentor, former NFL participant and her students’ mother and father, to discuss about their careers. “A main component of the kindergarten curriculum is finding out about the individuals who aid our local community perform,” she claimed.
Her learners have graduated to initially quality, but that does not signify Carr will cease instructing around the summer time. Via the Bridge to K plan in Fairfax universities, she’ll enable incoming kindergartners prepare for the 12 months ahead, and she ideas to devote some of her free time tutoring young children right before heading again to the classroom.
“Nothing beats the sensation of looking at your pupils have their gentle bulbs go on,” she reported. “Being a trainer is the most humbling and satisfying work.”