BROOKLAND, AR (KAIT) - March's Teacher of the Month Candace Campbell is a Biology teacher at Brookland High School. The day we visited, her class was getting to the "Heart" of Biology, or rather the heart of a sheep.
Now there is nothing a teenage girl likes better than having to wear protective eye wear when they were going to be on TV. Oh well, science and the rules require it.
Mrs. Campbell has been teaching for only 4 years, she still is getting that OJT and taps into more experienced teachers for advice. But, she says "Even talking with teachers who have taught for 20-25 years they still have the same struggles that even beginning teachers have."
One difficulty, getting high school students to enjoy cutting up sheep hearts. Some take it seriously and some do not. It is amazing what kinds of jokes these teens can come up with a sheep heart in their hands.
Using models and real life items like the hearts fit into Campbell's teaching plan for her students.
Campbell, "This helps with students who learn better with Hands-On. I just try to do many types of instruction so that I am hitting as many individuals learning styles as possible. That's my number one goal, is for students to feel exceptional in my classroom."
Looking around the classroom you notice students coaching other students. Campbell says she teaches her students to teach her students.
Campbell, "I do a lot of cooperative learning in small groups." She continues; "Peer teaching where one group will learn about a concept and teach it to the rest of the class. "
Being a young teacher we were curious as to her philosophy about teaching. "It's a great gig for me!" she grins. "You get to come to school each day and you are an influence on these students. I love to talk to these guys and get to know them and help them create a pathway to what they are going to do after high school. That's the most rewarding thing that I have."
Campbell says she gets an amazing amount of parental support and that's important to her. She knows that high school is just one step on a life path and she wants her student's parents to realize that their kids can succeed but she is a resource not the director.
"I want to be able to give those parents every available resource to be sure their child will be successful in whatever avenue they choose after high school."