Pocopson Elementary School first grade teacher Amy Simonds has been nominated for the 2017-2018 national LifeChanger of the Year award.
Sponsored by the National Life Group Foundation, LifeChanger of the Year recognizes and rewards the very best K-12 educators and school district employees across the United States who are making a difference in the lives of students by exemplifying excellence, positive influence and leadership.
Amy Simonds was nominated by the parent of a student, Naomi Bowen.
Mrs. Simonds is the quintessential fairytale elementary teacher. She has the biggest heart and the kindest way with all of her students. She once shared that she could never imagine doing anything other than teaching first grade. This year, she was a rock for Bowen's daughter, the youngest of four, who entered Mrs. Simonds' class as a new student to the district.
"Being a teacher myself and having worked with many excellent teachers over the years, I am amazed by the exceptional amount of effort that Mrs. Simonds devotes to ensuring that the needs of each and every one of her students are met," Bowen said.
Mrs. Simonds is always there for her students, often answering emails late at night and sending frequent reminders using multiple mediums to ensure that her busy parents are aware of their students' needs in her classroom. This general description of Mrs. Simonds can't even begin to illuminate the many little things she does to make each of her children love her and love school. When talking to Mrs. Simonds, you can tell that she truly loves and cares about each of her students. Bowen recalled that on one occasion, upon hearing that Bowen's family adopted a new puppy, Mrs. Simonds, without prompting, went out of her way to get a picture of the puppy and print it so that Bowen's daughter could show the rest of her class and share her excitement.
"This year, my daughter came home happy and excited to share stories from Mrs. Simonds' classroom every single day!" Bowen said.
Mrs. Simonds instills a love for learning and persevering through tough problems, while helping her students learn to value their strengths.
"My daughter is very lucky to have had the experience of learning with Mrs. Simonds in first grade," said Bowen. "I believe that the teaching community has much to learn from the magic Mrs. Simonds creates in her classroom, each and every day."