(Google) Meet-ing and Exceeding Expectations
For Allison Crawford, receiving a 2020-21 Clark County School District New Educator of the Year Award was the culmination of a first-year teaching experience that was both challenging and rewarding in equal measure.
Allison, a 2020 College of Education alumna (who was previously featured before her graduation), was recognized for her outstanding efforts teaching honors algebra at Sunrise Mountain High School. Reflecting upon her experiences with being a rookie teacher during the pandemic, she noted the challenges of teaching and the rewarding feeling she gets from stepping into the classroom and helping her students be the best they can be.
“My first year of teaching was challenging in the sense that I knew what I needed to do to make sure my students were successful online,” she said. “I would say I learned three main things – firstly, staying positive about the situation, never being afraid to ask for help as it’s important for your students to see this is okay, and the most important thing was just being myself.”
Her experiences at UNLV set her on the path for what is sure to be a long and successful career as an educator. Touching upon how her program helped her, Allison noted, “I am very grateful to the college. I particularly appreciated the number of opportunities that I had to get into the classroom before student teaching and was always encouraged to get my substitute license, which is very important. The college also did a great job pairing me with a fantastic mentor, Matthew Moyle, who teaches math at Clark High School.”
Looking back at receiving the award, Allison spoke of her pride in being honored for her early achievements in education and noted her desire to keep improving. “On the day I was presented with the award, the kids were all cheering on the Google Meet. It was a little surreal,” she said. “I don't like to mention my award too much because being a teacher isn't about being the best – it’s really about improving every day.”
By James Howley