EAST ARCADIA — Celeste Lennon of East Arcadia School has been named as the 2013-14 Bladen County Schools Teacher of the Year.
“I was very ecstatic and honored to represent the fine educators of Bladen County,” said Lennon when she was informed of being selected as Teacher of the Year. “My co-workers were very excited for me, as well.”
Lennon teaches middle grades social studies at East Arcadia. She is a graduate of Bladenboro High School and Fayetteville State Univeristy. She is an active member of NCAE and St. Luke AME Zion Church.
“I enjoy working with all grade levels of students. I love children and I am always trying to find creative and unique ways to enhance student learning,” said Lennon.”There are several activities that I head up at the school. They include fall festival celebration, prom, and black history programs.”
Lennon is currently preparing for the regional Teacher of the Year competition while also enjoying being back in her classroom. She said she is a little nervous about competing on the regional level.
“We have to prepare a portfolio of things we are doing in our classroom,” said Lennon. “It’s a professional portfolio about us.”
Once that is submitted, she said she will be contacted to set up a time for the interview process.
Lennon added that, though she is a little nervous, she also is excited about the prospect of the regional competition.
She added that her students have been very supportive of the process and excited.
“They feel like we have been highlighted. It’s created a sense of excitement at the school,” said Lennon.
She added that, since being named as Teacher of the Year, she has been busy.
“They have me on various boards and committees in the district,” said Lennon. “It’s been interesting.”
Lennon said that as she travels throughout the school district, meeting with different schools, she has gained a lot of knowledge about how other teachers and administrators approach things.
“I believe all children should be given the chance to learn. I believe you teach children the way you want your own kids to be taught,” said Lennon.
She said that she uses a lot of hands-on projects in her classes, as well as a lot of research on different topics according to the subject. Lennon added that she believes also that students should be held accountable for their own learning.
When asked what advice she might offer to a young teacher just beginning his or her career, she had this to say: “Do your job to the fullest. Make sure you read and understand what your job entails or requires you to do.”
She added that they should understand the curriculum and set rules and expectations for their classrooms.