The Bellefontaine Rotary Club presented its annual Excellence in Teaching Awards today at the Hilliker Y to three area educators — Jessica Hilbun, Lisa Plank and Allison Reule (left to right below).
Nominated by parent Kara Wenger, Hilbun is a second-grade teacher at Benjamin Logan Elementary School. She is a 12-year-educator for Benjamin Logan Schools.
“I’ve always been impressed with Jessica and her desire for the kids to improve their academic skills, but it is equally important for her that ‘her kids’ become good citizens,” Wenger wrote in her nomination letter. “She is one of the most dedicated teachers, mom, daughter and wife I know.”
In her portion of the nomination form, the second-grade teacher said her teaching style is “a mixture of direct teaching style with discussion and modeling.
“My classroom is a completely involved classroom environment. I engage the students through whole classroom instruction where I instruct the lesson…Then I model the expected learning and the outcome of that learning.”
Fellow award recipient Plank is a Bellefontaine Elementary School kindergarten teacher who has worked in the district for 13 years.
“I build rapport with my students through modeling and encouraging the development of positive character and leadership traits that are essential in becoming a productive citizen in society,” she said of her classroom. “The ultimate goal is for each child to become an independent learner while being courteous and honest toward others.”
She was nominated by parent Kristen Conley, who said Plank “never hesitates to send home notes of encouragement and gives the students constant reminders of how awesome they are.
“She’s more than understanding with the children and my daughter has learned so much, thanks to her patience and creativity in teaching.“
Final award recipient Allison Reule is a seventh-grade intervention specialist at Benjamin Logan Middle School. She has served for seven years at Benjamin Logan Schools and 10 years total in education.
“My student’s obstacles become my own personal obstacles,” she said of her teaching style. “In collaboration with each student and their different, specific, and unique needs, we try to overcome our obstacles together. Each student is different, so usually a method that worked for one student will not always work for another student.”
The intervention specialist was nominated by parent Kathy Kinney, who said, “This teacher is a 24/7, 365 teacher… She works nonstop to teach them. …They have learned more with her than any teacher they have ever had.
“That isn’t the best part of Alli. The best part is how kind and patient she is with the kids.”