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Cale earns recognition

for first-year teaching


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Tammi Cale, Riley School fourth-grade teacher, has been nominated for the Kansas Cable Telecommunications Horizon Award.

The program is sponsored by the Kansas State Department of Education and the Kansas Cable Telecommunications Association. It identifies and recognizes representatives of excellent teaching in the elementary and secondary classrooms in the state.

The mission of the program is to recognize exemplary first-year teachers who perform in a way that distinguishes them as outstanding.

In a nomination letter, Riley School Principal JoAnn Blevins said:

“It is my honor to recommend Mrs. Tammi Cale for the Horizon Award.

“Many factors distinguish her from other first-year teachers, but the one that strikes me the most is her ability to ‘hear’ students.

“Mrs. Cale does not just listen for the right answer or the ability to explain how a student found an answer; she listens for the message behind the words,” Blevins said.

“Looking back on my first year of teaching, there were a lot of things that I believe helped to make me successful,” Cale said in her application.

“As a new teacher, there are so many things that you must learn to help you to be a ‘good’ teacher that it can be very overwhelming.

“The first thing that I would tell a new teacher would be to consult with your colleagues as much as possible.

“The knowledge that you gain from veteran teachers helps to form the type of teacher you want to be and how you apply new concepts to your classroom.

“It is important to be able to gain new knowledge from colleagues as well as constructive criticism to help guide the planning and instruction.

“The second thing I would tell a new teacher would be to reflect on your teaching. Take the time to sit down and reflect on how each lesson went.

“What could I have done differently? As a teacher, we generally teach the same content year after year.

“By taking the time now to reflect on your teaching and what you could do better, it will help to serve your students for the next year. 

“A great teacher knows how to look back and see where he or she can improve their teaching, to be better for their students.

“The last thing I would tell a new teacher is to enjoy your job and have fun. You have the most important job, which is teaching young students.

“You are there to mold their minds and help shape who they want to become.

“As a teacher you will play many roles. You might be their mom, a nurse, a friend, a protector or a role model. Always remember to laugh and have fun because no one day will be like the next,” Cale said.

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