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Teacher of the Year

Mary Helen King SCMS's 2015-2016 Teacher of the Year      

Special Education

Mildly Intellectually Disabled                                                                       

6, 7, and 8th  

  1. Career in Education

  • Special Education Teacher, Swift Creek Middle School: 2012-Present

  • Instructional Aide, Emotionally Disabled, Swift Creek Middle: December 2011-June 2012

  • Student Teacher: Monacan High School:   2011

  1. Service to Students

  • Cheerleading Coach, 2012-2014

  • Lowe’s Toolbox for Education Grant recipient, 2013

  • Dance Team sponsor, 2013-Present

  • Sparkle Dance Team sponsor, 2015-Present

  • Creek Cafe sponsor

  • Participant in school Talent Show: 2012-Present

  • SCA Co-sponsor, 2015

  • Bus Buddies co-sponsor, 2013-Present

  • Brandermill Church Sunday School Teacher, 2007- Present

  • Brandermill Church Vacation Bible School Teacher, 2007-Present

  1. Service to the Teaching Profession

  • Student Teacher Mentor, 2015

  1. Awards and Recognition

  • New Teacher of the Year Nomination, 2012

Why I Teach


I teach for JOY.  

In the recent Pixar animated movie, Inside Out, Riley, an eleven year- old girl, has a conflict with her emotions: Joy, Sadness, Fear, Disgust, and Anger.  Many middle-school students deal with these emotions daily.  Special Education students also have a difficult time with emotions and how to handle them.  I teach to help my students find Joy and  to overcome the other less-desired emotions.

I teach to help students find Joy.  I love to see their smiling faces when they have battled with so many other emotions.  My hope is that they can find the good in everything.    

SADNESS:  I teach to help students not feel sad.  Students feel sadness for many different reasons.  They may be upset about their academic achievements or events that are outside of school.  I feel it is important to know about their lives to help boost their self-esteem and

make them feel successful.  

FEAR:  I teach to help students get over their fears.  I teach to help students step out of the comfort zone and do things they feared to do before.  I help them to perform in front of peers and crowds, and I try to assure them that they can achieve new things without fear.

DISGUST:  I teach to help others get over their disgust.  Even in today’s society, people still feel students with disabilities should not be included.  I teach to showcase students’ contributions to society.  I teach to include them in every possible opportunity.  

ANGER:  Many students with disabilities don’t like to think of themselves as different.  It can be hard for them to understand that they are not like others.  They become angry.  Letting students know that I believe in them and can help them be proud of themselves is why I teach.  

According to Disney, these five emotions are what middle-school children feel each day. I am sure there are more, but I teach to find the JOY in each child.