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Rockstar Teachers

There's just something about certain teachers that draws students to them in droves and keeps them checking in years, even decades later. Here, we highlight some of these rockstars of the classroom.

Teaching history as history is happening

In Bill Crane’s 26 years of teaching U.S. history at Rockford High School, rarely has the subject been so immediately relevant to his students’ lives...

‘Feels like I just got here yesterday’

Kelly LaCroix has worked in the same classroom at Kettle Lake Elementary for two decades, and her enthusiasm continues to grow every day...

A new teacher with a passion for the classroom: ‘I love helping kids’

While the number of new teachers continues to drop dramatically, Brittney DesLauries says she wants to do it for the rest of her life...

‘100 percent mesmerized by my job-this is what I get to do today’

Making sure each student is recognized and learns life lessons are what matters, said this Cedar Springs teacher...

She focuses on words and beyond, helping ELL students be successful

As an EL teacher and club adviser, Christy Tripp-Arkema advocates for students, serving as a bridge and a voice. She’s a high-energy, passionate instructor who learns along with her students and makes sure they have what they need to be successful...

‘It was the right job for me — always has been’

In Cindy Prentler’s second grade classroom, books inspire, teach, and beautify the space...

Take a ‘walk in the woods’ at this elementary school

A fifth-grade teacher’s hobby has transformed the hallways, with a carved woodland creature at nearly every classroom door...

‘Nobody can take our education away’

After completing her student teaching at Thornapple Kellogg, Erin Kraker is back, bringing her own style to the classroom...

‘Bring your best every day’

Katie Bredeweg, a second-grade teacher at Stoney Creek Elementary, talks about her experiences in the classroom and the lasting impact that a teacher can have...

Seismic lessons from this rock star teacher

GRCC Geology Professor and volcanologist Tari Mattox brings her first-hand knowledge of eruptions, rocks and much more into class...

Michigan art teacher of year makes all subjects ‘artful’

Art teacher Adrienne DeMilner brings art into all subjects and areas at East Kentwood Freshman Campus and out into the community. She was recently awarded 2018 Michigan Art Educator of the Year and Secondary Art Teacher of the Year by the Michigan Art Education Association...

‘She will fill your bucket if you are empty’

This art teacher provides a solid skill base, then encourages her students to infuse their work with elements of their own lives. And she shares her own, which she says creates a safe space for them to reflect...

Her overarching goal: to teach that American ideals are worth striving for

Rebecca Debowski witnesses and guides her students as they learn to look at things in a more nuanced way and respect what one another have to say, from every perspective...

She chose music over medicine, and her students are glad she did

Wendy Tenney Tenney is one of 10 Michigan educators who were named as 2018-19 Regional Teachers of the Year...

Director takes joy in teaching student musicians, ‘to see what they can do and...

Band director Greg Wells grew up as part of Northview’s proud tradition, in a family of music educators, and feels honored to carry it on
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