Model Teachers at NNPS

Model Teachers:
Middle School Science

Meet this model teacher team and learn how college, career and citizen-ready skills come alive in their classrooms!

Sabrina Leahy

Content: Middle School Science
School: Hines Middle
Years Taught: 3

What do you most love about teaching?
I am a science teacher. But I value being a teacher of students above being a teacher of science. As middle school is such a transitional time in students' lives, a teacher at this level is sometimes as much a teacher of life, personal skills, and how to be an admirable human being…as we are teachers of the subject matter. I have found that what I most love about teaching is this opportunity to help students succeed in various aspects of their lives, not solely the subject matter I'm assigned to teach. The very best thing I can do as a teacher is help create an environment where students feel safe, secure, and confident to be themselves, to take risks, and to fail and grow from their mistakes and experiences. Middle school students are amidst a time of personal discovery and development, and need opportunities to not only have positive behaviors modeled, but also explore and engage in experiences that allow them to discover their strengths and talents. I'm honored to get to be part of this leg of the journey.

Why are you passionate about supporting fellow teachers?
As I tell my students, knowledge is good by itself, but it's even more wonderful and powerful when shared with others! I credit my success as a teacher to all the valuable ideas, perspectives, and mentorship I have received from countless other effective educators over the years. Teaching is a team effort and in order to work to help every child be successful, effective practices must be shared, and we must learn and grow together.

Why do you love working in NNPS?
It makes it easy to love and excel at what you do when you have such diversely talented students, wonderful colleagues willing to learn and grow alongside you, and a huge network of supporters who want nothing more than the very best for the students we have the pleasure of educating. That's exactly what I've found in NNPS.

Lyn Sawyer

Content: Middle School Science
School: Passage Middle
Years Taught: 6

What do you most love about teaching?
I love connecting with students. I enjoy getting to watch and guide them as they develop socially and intellectually. Within my content, I love connecting students to nature and the science that explains the world around them.

Why are you passionate about supporting fellow teachers?
Teaching is challenging in so many ways and support is essential! With the support of my fellow teachers, my first year formulated the foundation from which I developed stronger classroom management and organized lesson plans for each subsequent year. I will continue to build on this with their support.

What two words best describe you as a teacher? Why?
The two words that best describe me as a teacher are Frizzle and forgiving! I say Frizzle as in Ms. Frizzle from The Magic School Bus. I think it's important to love your content and be yourself. Your students will notice and appreciate both assets! I also believe forgiving is important because without forgiveness I'd get stuck on human nature's erroneous ways… whether they be my own or someone else's. We all deserve a second chance!