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The Message
Evansville, Indiana
May 8, 1998     The Message
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May 8, 1998
 

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The Message -- for Catholics of Southwestern Indiana Teacher of the Year Candidates are thanked for their dedication to teaching By MARY ANN HUGHES Message staff writer This fall, Phyllis Bussing, diocesan director of schools, asked principals, teachers and students in schools across the diocese to join her in keeping a gratitude journal. "'My hope was that each of us would come to realize more fully the many blessings in our lives. Finding five things daily for which to be grateful causes one to begin seeing that so many things that are often taken for granted, are really very important to us." During the Teacher of the Year banquet, she thanked each Candidate for their dedi- cation and service. "God has entrusted his precious children to these teachers. As I share with you what I have learned about these outstanding teach- ers, I think you will believe as I do, that they (the students) are in very good hands. Elaine Adams, St. Benedict, Evansville: Elaine believes that children, like adults, respond to a feeling of knowing they are good and that the effort they have put forth to do the job is worth recognizing She is called a tremendous motivator who expects and receives a true effort from every child. Her enthusiasm for help- ing others is contagious. Ann Buechler, Precious Blood, Jasper: She chooses to teach in a Catholic school because her faith in God is the most important thing in her life. She tells us that teaching, for her, is not just a job. It is a way of life. She feels lucky tobe able to live a life of service to others. Diana Carithers, St. Wendel, St. Wendel: We are told that she has a great influence on these tender young lives with all of the care, concern, and gentle- ness she showers on them. Mary Foley, Holy Spirit, Evansville: We are told that she is always there to shoulder the many demands a small school faculty incurs. Mary helps her students find their creativity and express it. That's a tough job with ultra self-conscious teenagers, but she works her magic by loving and bringing the best out of her stu- dents. Janelle Foster, Predous Blood, Jasper: She realizes that teach- ing in a Catholic school gives a teacher the opportunity to teach students values and morals at any time during the day. Janelle likes to start each day with a fresh outlook. She greets each student with a cheerful "good mornirlg," and gives each student an opportunity to tell her anything they deem important. She says that no mat- ter how trivial, if it's important to them, it is important to her. Dave Harris, St. John the Baptist, Newburgh: Dave says that Ancient Egypt is one of his favorite things to teach. He says, "! enjoy teaching Ancient Egypt because the students re so interested in the pyramids, the Sphinx and mummies. They try to figure out how the large stones were moved with- out wheels and were lifted and set in place without cranes. They are encouraged to come up with their own ideas on how it was done. Then we study the way it was actually done." Johnnie Heeke, Holy Family, Jasper: One of her co-workers says she believes every school should be blessed with a John- nie Heeke on their staff because she truly makes it a better place for everyone. Johnnie believes that one of the most "needed changes in education is how we teach stu- dents in our classrooms. "... Many students who have been identified with learning problems are now seen as having only different learning styles than what we thought the 'normal' child demonstrated. We must relate to all learning styles and find new avenues to evaluate stu- dents. We must develop a threat-free classroom and teach life skills that parents taught in the past. Teachers must keep up with new technology.. We must never quit being students, always learning." . Patti Herrin, Good Shep- herd, Evansville: Patti is superbly organized, very bright, intellectually curious, and most articulate. She gives her best to her students and expects their best in return. As one student said, "She's strict; but she's fair." She is always willing to go the "extra mile" for her students in order for them to achieve and succeed. Chris Hinkle, Precious Blood, Jasper: Chris tells us that she chose to "teach in a Catholic school for very personal rea- sons. Teaching in a Catholic school keeps me in touch with my own faith. I am constantly reminded of the Church's teachings when I prepare for liturgies and for religion class- es. It makes me analyze my own faith frequently. I am con- stantly reviewing how well l have done. When I am teaching my stu- dents a lesson in religion, I sometimes ask them to reflect on their own actions. I also take a moment to reflect on mine. If I taught in a public school, I would not have the opportuni- ty to do this." i :: -' " -::' -L Two teachers who have served the Diocese of Evansville for 40 years were Gerald A. Gettelfinger. They are MilUe Rueger, a teacher at St. Theresa Benedictine Sister Christine Kempf, principal at St. Matthew School, Randy Hupfer, Memorial High School, Evansville: A stu- dent tells us that Mr. H. is more than a math teacher. Through functions, graphs, and sequences, he incorporates lessons about liv- ing a Christian lifestyle. He says, "Teaching is my life. Every aspect of my life has been impacted by my decision to teach. No other profession could have made my life as rich and happy." Benedictine Sister Doris Marie Knebel, Resurrection, Evansville: High expectations are evident in her classes. She challenges each student to accept personal responsibility for his or her actions and to par- See TEACHER page 9 i!iil/i,i !i ,,:, ', ..... Ann Lampkins, a teacher at Holy Spirit BenediCtine Sister Doffs Marie Knebel, School, Evansville, were both Candidates of the Year award. -- Message photo ! !ii Stella Bennett, a first grade teacher at Holy Family School, Jasper, receives op Gerald A. Gettelfinger, recognizing her 30 years of service to the Diocese