Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Diane Heitzenrater: Finalist for PA Teacher of the Year!

Rich Pietras reports for The Intelligencer that one of the 12 finalists for Pennsylvania's Teacher of the Year is from Keith Valley Middle School in the Hatboro-Horsham School District. Diane Heitzenrater has taught technology to sixth, seventh, and eight graders for the past 8 years and if the praise from her peers is any indication, she has a great chance of winning.

Heitzenrater incorporates technology into middle school studies to show students how these tools can help them learn and make learning more fun. She really enjoys middle school: "I especially love teaching middle-school students. At that age they are all about changing. They are very exploratory and very clever. They are really starting to find out what their interests are."

Heitzenrater was nominated by fellow teachers, parents, community members and students. A committee of former finalists and PA Teachers of the Year chose 30 semifinalists then the 12 finalists, including Heitzenrater. She says she was "honored and thrilled" to make it through the process. It's no cakewalk -- the committee takes several months to make its decisions.

The principal of Keith Valley, Jonathan Kircher, calls Heitzenrater "an outstanding, student-centered educator" and a "teacher leader" who "works hard to help students be successful in their learning." He praised Heitzenrater and the whole technology department at Keith Valley for the help they have given teachers and students over the past four years to integrate technology into the curriculum.

The Pennsylvania Teacher of the Year will be announced in October at a celebration ceremony in Harrisburg. The winner will be the state's nominee for the national Teacher of the Year. The winner will also serve as a spokesperson for fellow teachers in PA.

Break a leg, Diane!

SOURCE: "Keith Valley teacher finalist for state's top honor" 06/19/08
photo courtesy of Wesley Fryer, used under this Creative Commons license

No comments: