Elizabeth Chapman, a seventh-grade Texas history and English teacher at Westbrook Intermediate School in Friendswood, received the Linden Heck Howell Outstanding Teaching of Texas History Award on October 9, 2009. Ms. Chapman, along with twelve other teachers across the state who received Outstanding Teaching of the Humanities awards, will receive a $5,000 cash prize, with an additional $500 for her school to purchase humanities-based instructional materials. For a complete list of the 2008–2009 award winners and Commended Teachers of the Humanities, click here.
"In preparing students for the responsibilities of democratic citizenship, I think that it is important to help them build a skill set that extends beyond the mastery of the content. I want my students to practice making good choices, and to understand the implications those choices will have on the future," said Ms. Chapman.
Ms. Chapman's students travel to Texas landmarks, museums, and archeology and history festivals, extending their study of history outside the classroom. She encourages her students to develop an awareness of their responsibilities as American citizens.
On October 15, Humanities Texas Director of Grants and Education Eric Lupfer traveled to Laredo to present an Outstanding Teaching of the Humanities award to Ms. Lilia Castillo, who until this year, taught at the Vidal M. Treviño School of Communications and Fine Arts. Dr. Martha E. Villarreal, director of the Vidal M. Treviño School of Communications and Fine Arts, said, "Ms. Castillo is a teacher who is passionate about her work. She has an innate ability to connect with her students and is constantly challenging and inspiring her students to greater achievements."
"I have experienced how all students, regardless of age, respond positively if I show them how much I want them to learn," said Ms. Castillo.
At Vidal M. Treviño, Ms. Castillo's students have been actively involved in writing for Tapestry, a campus-based literary magazine that received several prestigious awards and honors under her sponsorship, including an invitation to participate in Columbia University’s 2008 spring conference.
Ms. Ann Hale, of Haltom High School in Fort Worth, was honored on November 2 for her exceptional teaching of English. "I try to make connections between the curriculum in my classes and everything else the students may know or have experienced. That includes pop culture, history, news, and cartoons that are often cited as examples of complex concepts, as well as ever popular topics among their peers," said Ms. Hale.
Ms. Hale believes that to understand literature, her students must study it in its original historical or cultural context. When teaching classical literature such as "Oedipus Rex" or The Odyssey, her students also consider the Greek alphabet, art, language, and culture.
"We are pleased to recognize such accomplished teachers," said Humanities Texas Executive Director Michael L. Gillette. "They instill the joy of learning in their students and motivate them to achieve at high levels."
Nominations for the 2009–2010 Outstanding Teaching Awards are due on December 11, 2009. For more information, click here.
|Jay L. Clack||Breckenridge High School||Breckenridge|
|Jennifer M. Bell||Glencrest Middle School||Fort Worth|
|Lilia Castillo||Vidal M. Treviño School of Communications and Fine Arts||Laredo|
|Jana Fry||Williams High School||Plano|
|Jim Furgeson||McCallum High School||Austin|
|Ann Hale||Haltom High School||Fort Worth|
|Kathleen Hodges||Walnut Glen Academy for Excellence||Garland|
|Sally Hunter||Highland Park Elementary||Austin|
|Stacee Johnson||J. A. Vitovsky Elementary||Midlothian|
|Abigail Morton-Garland||IDEA College Prepatory||Donna|
|Kyle Olson||International High School||Austin|
|Signe Peterson||South Houston Intermediate School||South Houston|
|Elizabeth Chapman||Westbrook Intermediate School||Friendswood|
|Caroll Ann Adams||West Memorial Junior High||Katy|
|Claudia Allcorn||Craig Middle School||Abilene|
|Melanie Atkinson||Mansfield Summit High School||Arlington|
|Kris Baker||Cedar Valley Middle School||Austin|
|Margaret Clay||Kohlberg Elementary School||El Paso|
|Scott Coulson||Poteet High School||Mesquite|
|Kathryn L. Craig||Carl Wunsche Senior High School||Spring|
|Amy W. Eckler||John Paul II High School||Plano|
|Marsha Foltermann||B. McDaniel Middle School||Denison|
|Kenneth Ray Frankum||Pin Oak Middle School||Bellaire|
|Na'Tasha Freeman||Lake Air Middle School||Waco|
|Joanne Howard||Summer Creek Middle School||Crowley|
|Lori Johnson||Schimelpfenig Middle School||Plano|
|Leah Anne Kleiman||Schimelpfenig Middle School||Plano|
|Laine Leibick||Highland Park Elementary School||Austin|
|Bertha Lucio-Caballero||Oliveira Middle School/Brownsville ISD||Brownsville|
|Tim Mabe||Wills Point High School||Wills Point|
|Clifford A. Mabry||Friendswood High School||Friendswood|
|Patricia MacMullen||Connally High School||Austin|
|Natalie Martinez||Reagan High School||Houston|
|Sarah Moses||Reagan High School||Houston|
|Adelheid Murphrey||Hudson Middle School||Lufkin|
|Andre Nitsch||East Early College High School||Houston|
|Rory Payne||Anna High School||Anna|
|Jennifer Penny||Rice Middle School||Plano|
|John Pomeroy||St. Andrew's Episcopal School||Austin|
|Floy F. Rorie||Haggard Middle School||Plano|
|Darbie Safford||St. Monica School||Dallas|
|Karen Scheidler||Chapel Hill High School||Tyler|
|Wendy Seeliger||Lewisville High School||Lewisville|
|Christopher J. Smith||S&S High School||Sadler|
|Susan Staha||John Glenn Middle School||San Angelo|
|Jeff Steele||Runge High School||Runge|
|Tedra L. Ulmer||Lohn School||Lohn|
|Julie Witte||Guillen Middle School||El Paso|