TJ Warsnak, Kansas Teacher of the Year delegate and social studies teacher at Halstead High School speaks to education members last Thursday in Visser Hall. Each teacher gave advice and strategies for the classroom. 

The Kansas Teacher of the Year delegation presented awards to Emporia State education majors last Thursday afternoon in Visser Hall. 

Whitney Morgan was named Kansas 2019 Teacher of the year. Morgan is an English teacher at Wyandotte High School and compared the process of teaching to a candle. 

“Candles that burn for a long time become burnt out,” Morgan said. “After that, they are not useful for anyone. As teachers, it would be a good thing to try to avoid that the students get tired. Above all, we have to make them feel loved and supported. That is what I have as the main objective in my classes.”

The Kansas Teacher of the Year Award recognizes and utilizes representatives of excellent teaching in the elementary and secondary classrooms of the state, according to ksde.org. 

Other teachers honored were: Megan Clark, K-5 art teacher at Clear Creek Elementary School in Shawnee; Signe Cook, who teaches at Park Elementary School in Great Bend; Lan Huyhn, third grade teacher at the Christa Mcauliffe Academy in Wichita; Jennifer Brown, first grade teacher at Sheridan Elementary School in Junction City; Sharon Kuchinski, who teaches social studies in grades 9-11 at Leavenworth High School; T.J. Warsnak, a high school social studies teacher at Halstead-Bentley High School in Halstead; Nicole Corn, who teaches kindergarten at Sunset Hill Elementary School in Lawrence and Whitney Morgan, who teaches high school English at Wyandotte        Highschool.

“To me, it is important to create a culture of empathy in my classes,” Clark said. “I try to put myself in the shoes and place of my students. I think that helps my students succeed more as it limits or eliminates the obstacles.” 

Kuchinski encouraged the use of synergy in the classroom. While presenting her talk, which also addressed the Kansas school redesign.

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