Catapult Learning Educator Spotlight: October 2012

Educator Spotlight

Catapult Learning has long recognized that our teachers, our coaches, our specialized services professionals, and our consultants are the foundation upon which our company stands. We literally wouldn’t be here without their tireless efforts to help struggling students succeed! We thank them for all that they do each and every day.

In May 2012, we introduced the Catapult Learning Educator Spotlight where we honored some of our most dedicated teachers and education professionals. They are our very own shining stars!

The Catapult Learning Educator Spotlight will now be a monthly feature on our Catapult Corner Blog. The educators that are highlighted are nominated by their Catapult colleagues, in recognition of the positive impact they make with children throughout the country.

We are extremely excited to announce our honorees for October 2012!

  • Tammy Dillard-Literacy First Consultant-Oklahoma
  • Suri Steinberger-Teacher-Miami, FL
  • Kathy Williams-Harris-Teacher-Chicago, IL

Tammy Dillard-Literacy First Consultanttammy-dillard-headshot-oct2012

  • Purcell, Oklahoma
  • M.Ed. Administration, Curriculum Supervision and Leadership
  • University of Oklahoma

Why did you become a Literacy First Consultant?

Literacy First initially intrigued me because of the team’s commitment to developing the capacity of teachers and instructional leaders. The process has always been focused on developing a teacher’s ability to provide balanced reading instruction. Dr. Blokker’s passion for ensuring that all children develop essential reading skills kept me motivated and excited to a part of the mission.

What do you love most about being a consultant?

Consulting affords me frequent opportunities to collaborate, network, and grow with committed educators who share a similar drive and purpose. My consulting colleagues are my professional life line. It’s a thrill to get to learn and grow with a group of committed educators who remain constantly focused on improving the quality of reading instruction in schools.

What is your greatest Literacy First consulting success story?

It’s really many stories rolled into one – but probably my biggest LF success has been getting to hear teachers and other consultants start a conversation with the phrase “I was looking at the data”. Great things happen in schools when teachers and leaders make thoughtful decisions as a result of data analysis.

What have you learned from your students?

I learn something in every interaction with a student. The thing children teach me most consistently is that my perspective is not the only one. Children have taught me that everyone deserves an opportunity and has an innate desire to grow; but the path for each learner is varied. Whether you are the struggling student, an accelerated learner, a teacher, the principal or a district level leader – education is really about continuous improvement.

Suri Steinberger – Math Teacher

  • Miami, FL
  • B.A. Education, Tour College and M.A. Pyschology, Brooklyn College

Why did you become a teacher?

I have always loved children and I have always had a desire to help those in need of understanding. Throughout my high school years I tutored my classmates for free and was inspired when they told me about their good grades. I found it so rewarding to help make people understand.

What do you love most about teaching for Catapult Learning?

It is so rewarding seeing the light bulbs go on. I teach middle school and high school and they are sometimes embarrassed about asking questions. I help them to understand their work and they do not feel uncomfortable. I am known as the teacher that helps them learn without the homework or tests.

What is your greatest Catapult Learning teaching success story?

At the end of last summer a girl wrote to thank me and told me how nice I was to her. She said that I had given her the opportunity to learn and she felt smart for the first time in her life.

What have you learned from your students?

I would say that if you believe in your student’s ability, that can give them the confidence to believe in themselves, and then MIRACLES can happen!

Kathy Williams-Harris – Math and Reading Teacherkathy-williams-harris-photo-oct2012-e1350507230779

  • Chicago, IL
  • B.A. Elementary Education and Pursuing an M.A. in Education

Why did you become a teacher?

I became a teacher because of the love I have for children. I love to guide students through the process of learning. It gives me great pleasure to know that I have been able to reach students who struggle.

What do you love most about teaching for Catapult Learning?

The one thing that I love most about working for Catapult is the small class sizes. I love being able to connect to the students in a smaller setting.

What is your greatest Catapult Learning teaching success story?

My greatest success story was with an 8th grader. This student was new to the school. His grades were very low and had a very bad attitude. He asked for help in Math and Reading. I took the time to work with him. His Mother saw a change in his grades and also his attitude. This particular child latched on to me, some people even thought he was my child. His Mother was very grateful for my help and upon graduation his family awarded me with a plaque.

What have you learned from your students?

My students have taught me to have patience and to be a good listener.

Thanks again to all of this month’s honorees!  You can thank them too, please leave your comments for our educators below!

John Fergus

1 Comment

  1. JODI SINGER November 2, 2012 Reply

    CONGRATULATIONS TO kATHY,TAMMY AND SURI ON A JOB WELL DONE! IT’S SO NICE TO WORK FOR A COMPANY WHO RECOGNIZES THE “WORKER BEES”… ALL OF US WORK HARD!! BUT, SOME OF OUR TEACHERS ARE TRULY EXCEPTIONAL! I AM PROUD TO BE A MEMBER OF SUCH A FABULOUS TEAM! WAY TO GO LADIES! KEEP UP THE GREAT WORK!!

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