Shout-out to teachers

Education Notes

Laura Cazalas is the special programs coordinator at the Port Aransas Independent School District.

Laura Cazalas is the special programs coordinator at the Port Aransas Independent School District.

Whatever direction our lives take, it all seems to start with a teacher. Some may say that the first role model of children outside their family is a teacher. Looking back to school years, one can almost always pick out a teacher that impacted their life.

Candi Villagomez (PAISD custodian): “I’d tell the teacher’s aide that helped me all four years of my high school – thank you for taking time out of your day to help me figure out this thing called life. The lessons she taught me I still hold dear.”

An important part of teaching is striving to make learning enjoyable when it could be a plain/boring concept or subject. An engaging classroom comes naturally to good teachers.

Activities, games and friendly competitions are just some ways to help solidify learning while having fun. Qualities of a good teacher shine through with effective communication and listening, flexibility, understanding and patience. A good teacher is also competent, creative, and caring. They know what motivates each student and are able to expand their limits with a lifelong love of learning.

David Swartwout (PAHS principal): “1. Thank you for being patient and understanding with some of my less-than-stellar impulses. 2. Writing, language and literature. 3. Senior AP English. Thank you for turning me on to all the English stuff. I still like it. A lot.”

Teachers work hard to avoid lifeless and idle lessons and activities. They constantly look for ways to become better or change lessons so that they will reach more minds. They always maintain a desirable passion for their students and for the learning process. Teachers love learning and love the learners. The art of bringing these two things together is their joy.

Tisha Piwetz (PAISD assistant superintendent): “I would like to thank my fifth-grade teacher, Patricia Byhler (I had a chance to do this before she passed) for helping me find my ability to read and love for reading.”

Not only do teachers play an essential role in guiding their students academically and through extracurricular activities, they can also be responsible for helping to shape the future of a student and by being an important role model. Teachers have a way of finding the best among students and motivating them to perform better in all areas of life, creating a solid foundation for their future.

Lia Phillips (BMS science teacher): “Thank you to Mrs. G (Mary Goodwin, 8th grade history teacher and student council sponsor), for having a very powerful influence on all those students years ago. I know I’m not the only one who was motivated by your teaching and your caring nature. I will never forget how you were able to make history enjoyable and I hope to do the same with science.”

Teachers form solid and strong relationships with their students and also sometimes with their parents. In order to help students feel comfortable and secure, teachers are warm, caring and open individuals. They communicate with parents regularly–sometimes just to celebrate what their child did at school! This type of connection ensures that students feel safe to share their ideas in a supportive learning environment.

Renee Hillis (PAISD Child Nutrition Director): “I was a young mom to a very intelligent 7-year-old. Mrs. Turnage was very insightful and gave great advice to me on how to channel a very intelligent child in a positive direction.”

Teachers are leaders. They take on leadership roles inside and outside the classroom. They lead each and every day in the way they act, speak and conduct themselves. They lead their students through rigorous learning and many challenges. The teaching career is tough, but one of great impact.

Trevor Green (BMS teacher): ”I was a troublemaker from the first day of kindergarten. If possible, I’d line up every teacher I ever had and offer each one a heartfelt, ‘I am so sorry, please forgive me. I had no idea.’ ”

We are blessed to have wonderful teachers here at PAISD that encompass all of these things. Our teachers and staff always have the students’ best interest in mind and work so hard to fulfill their learning needs. PAISD–the BEST place to be! Because, Marlins…

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