Ever since the 9th grade, LASA teacher Alison Earnhart, has been in love with the idea of teaching science. 10 years ago, Earnhart started her long-lasting dream of becoming a science teacher, and in 2008, she came to teach at LASA. In 2011, Earnhart won her first LASA Teacher of the Year award and won the same award again this school year. Having already won two LASA teacher of the year awards, Earnhart says that she is ecstatic about winning this award again. This award is very important to her because she explained that she grew up in a very small homogenous population.
“I’m incredibly thankful to teach at a school with such a diverse student population, both culturally and socially,” Earnhart said. “Working with students from a variety of backgrounds teaches me about what it means to be human.”
She explains that she has had an amazing and inspiring impact on all the students who have been fortunate enough to have her as a teacher.
“Any award that is given by the people you work with daily is far more meaningful that something that comes from an outside group,” Earnhart said. “I try really hard to encourage mature, responsible behavior and model the values I care most about — respect, responsibility, and a willingness to work hard to achieve great things. I don’t have the mindset that I’m trying to create a bunch of astronomers and engineers.”
She feels that her class is to spark creativity and to open more topics and ideas to her students. She explains that teaching is a tough and exhausting job both mentally and physically, yet she believes that every second of being a teacher is worth it.
“Sometimes I get notes from students about their successes in life years after I’ve taught them, and those interactions are worth more than anything to me,” Earnhart said. “No matter how hard the job is or how many hours of my week it consumes, it’s always worth it when I get real feedback from a student who tells me how much they learned or how much they just enjoyed my class.”
Along with that, Ms. Earnhart tries to reach students and parents and connect with them in ways that only a 21st century teacher can. Using modern technology, she believes that she becomes a stronger influence to her students and their parents with just a single click on the computer.
“I like to keep in touch with parents and the broader community, and posting pictures and videos of what we do in class,” Earnhart said. “It helps spread the word about all the amazing things we do here at LASA.”
She says that she enjoys the responsibility of giving students the opportunities to thrive at school and in life. Although Ms. Earnhart remarks that she adores her teaching job here at LASA, yet she also does many other activities that help educate students and schools outside of LASA.
“[I enjoy] doing a lot of things beyond the classroom, like travelling to various elementary schools to help them get setup with 3D printers,” Earnhart said. “It’s a lot of fun, and it’s also a big help to those schools and their teachers.”
Along all the many tasks she’s already accomplished in her life, she still believes that she has a bright future ahead of her. Teaching has always been a part of who she is and she wants to be associated with more educational projects during the summer.
“I really don’t think I’d ever want to become an administrator,” said Earnhart.“I do really love to travel, and perhaps I could get involved in other programs that allow me to travel over the summer.With each new class, there are always fun and unique personalities, and I really love getting to know students and appreciating their differences.”