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Champions for Learning announces Golden Apple recipients

Posted 2/18/22

Students in six Collier County classrooms received bushels of Golden Delicious apples as their teachers were..

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Online Exclusive

Champions for Learning announces Golden Apple recipients


NAPLES — On Thursday, Feb. 17, students in six Collier County classrooms received bushels of Golden Delicious apples as their teachers were surprised with Golden Apple awards, highlighting best practices in teaching.

Representatives from Suncoast Credit Union, Presenting Sponsor of the Golden Apple Teacher Recognition Program, were joined by major sponsors, Champions For Learning staff and volunteers to present the awards to the teachers in their classrooms. 60 Teachers of Distinction representing 58 Collier County Public Schools shared their best practices. Champions For Learning’s community-based selection committee identified six practices to highlight as part of the Golden Apple process.

Congratulations to the following 2021-2022 Golden Apple recipients:

 Robert Boyle
• Immokalee Technical College
• Adult Education
• Eight years teaching
• Scaffolding Theory into Practice

The progression of these three methods ensures obtainment of knowledge and success in the field for these adult learners. First, students read the information and generate questions to bring back to the class. Second, classroom discussion is held to address the questions and take a deeper dive into the theories. Third, students put theory into action through hands-on practice in the lab.

Amanda Bray
• Lake Trafford Elementary
• Fourth Grade
• Math & Science (Cambridge)
• Seven years teaching
• Engaging Students in Immersive & Interactive Lessons

Using room transformations keeps students engaged in the learning opportunities and always asking “What fun lessons are happening today?” By transforming the room into a rock mine to study minerals or a NASA operation to study the solar system, these 4th grade students are fully engaged in obtaining new knowledge and building on what they already know.

Dyan E. Konicek
• Immokalee Middle
• Seventh Grade Civics (Exceptional Student Education; Advanced; Cambridge)
• 18 years teaching
• Student Engagement for the Win!

Authentic student engagement is paramount to their success. Using educational games to find the crossroads of what students WANT to do and what they NEED to do has become invaluable in obtaining a high level of student engagement. Utilizing resources such as a teacher-created board game has improved student focus, retention of content materials, and motivation.

Stephanie Kutz & Lauren York
• Lake Park Elementary
• Second Grade
• Nine years teaching
• Making Interactive Learning Come Alive Through Collaboration

When students step into this classroom, they become an active part of their own learning. They do not walk in wondering what they will learn but knowing they will become part of the learning process. Using hands-on interactions through cross-curricular engagement with an emphasis on collaboration, these second graders are fully engaged and achieving success behaviorally and academically.

Mishelle Levine
• Oakridge Middle

• Sixth Grade
• Language Arts (Cambridge; Advanced)
• 11 years teaching
• Maximizing Engagement with Collaboration & Choice

Developed to promote independence and increase excitement for learning, this best practice maximizes student engagement by providing meaningful, relevant and appropriate choices. Through innovative lessons tied to the standards, and including choice, students utilize their strengths and talents to learn and master the content.

Heather Stallings
• Calusa Park Elementary
• Third Grade
• Reading, Writing and Math (Exceptional Students/Inclusion)
• 25 years teaching
• Project Participate: Fostering Active Learners

What does participation look like and sound like? How can it be developed? It is taught by modeling clear expectations and metacognitive goal making. In this classroom, students learn to be self-assured and intrinsically motivated. The end goal is students who can learn, thrive and grow by practicing active participation.

“At Suncoast Credit Union, we believe a community that invests in their educators builds a strong foundation for students, businesses and community at large. By creating learning opportunities through community grants, Suncoast helps create stronger teachers and students. For this reason, we create opportunities for educators to share best practices and to grow professionally," said Cindy Helton executive director of the Suncoast Credit Union.

awards, recognition, teachers, Golden Apple