Student Nomination Story

My nomination is different than most. The teacher I am nominating has won countless awards and is the best teacher in the state of Louisiana, maybe even the country. She is innovative, fun, unique, quirky and determined. Mrs Hoosier is a Science teacher of grades 9-12 at Buckeye High in rural Deville, Louisiana. She is my teacher, but she is also my mom. My mom does not treat me any different than her other students so this application comes from the place of a student, not a child. She is the reason I am pursuing an education in the Science field. Has she helped me grow as a person? Of course! She does that for all of her students. It's the how that matters though. My mom believes in pushing her students into growing as decent humans. She always reminds me that the legacy I leave behind is what I will be known for. I've watched her volunteer in the community when no one knew, I've watched her pay for military members lunches without anyone else noticing, I've seen her spend thousands of dollars over the years on her classroom and lab so her students would get the education that they deserve, I've watched her leave our house to attend funerals of current and former students, I've sat in the living room with her for hours while she made up creative hands-on lessons from scratch. I've learned to be a better person because of her actions as a teacher both in school and out of school. So has she helped me to grow as a person? Yes - she's helped all of us to grow as stewards of the environment and just decent humans. Academically, my mom is the most challenging and successful teacher at our school. Everyone knows about her classes and although they are rigorous, students fight to get into her limited class sizes. All students love her quirky ways and her willingness to be open-minded and creative in all things related to school. My mom works with me to make sure that I am being the best student that I can possibly be each and every day. As a teacher, she helps me to understand the material in ways that other teachers cannot. That's saying a lot because I have dyslexia and color blindness so sometimes things can be confusing for me. In my moms classes, she teaches in unique ways every single day. Her lessons are different, hands-on and invigorating. She can get anyone excited about science and loves to teach about the world around us to make us better citizens and stewards of the environment. My successes are her successes and her evidenced by the fact that I was nominated by other teachers as a Student of the Year candidate for my school. Only 6 students had this distinction. Has she supported my academic growth? Absolutely! I am a 4.0 student on my way to majoring in Veterinary medicine because of her teaching and support. My mom has inspired be to be someone that loves the world around me, especially animals. In my community, this is rare. I live in a rural area known for hunting and fishing anything that moves. All of my friends litter, kill animals for sport and do not care about the environment. It is their way of life and it is how they were raised. My mom (and teacher) inspires us to be more than this. She has opened our eyes to worldwide issues such as poaching and the destruction of animal habitats. She has been featured in Louisiana Life magazine for her animal rescue and rehabilitation efforts that occur in the classroom. I've watched her nurse baby squirrels every 2 hours, even while teaching, so they could have a chance at survival and release back into the wild. As a student at Buckeye High, I've been involved with habitat construction and maintenance. We've learned about native and nonnative species and care for more than 30 animals in her classroom and lab. At home, she doesn't stop teaching me or inspiring me. She cares for abandoned and abused animals at home as well. I was even able to travel with her to collect a Ball Python mating pair that were being released illegally into the wild in Louisiana by some locals. The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries called her to see if she would be willing to take on one of the snakes once they caught the people trying to let this breeding pair go. Of course we left immediately and took on the male snake. What most people don't know is that she already had 4 snakes and no more cages or room. What did she do? She bought the stuff with her own money and brought the animal to her classroom. My mom then used this opportunity to teach our classes about how pythons can take over an ecosystem such as in the Everglades in Florida. This is why I am pursuing a career in Veterinary medicine. My dream is to get a degree in animal science and then join the fight to stop poaching and animal endangerment around the world. Because of my mom, my teacher, I will hopefully help protect the world's endangered species one day and will be able to save animals instead of killing them or standing back and doing nothing. My mom has inspired me in more ways than you have listed and in more ways that I can put into words. She is my inspiration in all that she overcome in her own life and in her teaching ways. She is the best teacher that I have ever had and I ask that you please consider her for this award. The fact that I am her son should have no impact on your decision. She is my teacher first and foremost and is the reason I am where I am today.

Canaan Hoosier

To see more exceptional teacher nominees, visit The Honor Roll.