Happy Teachers Appreciation Week! - Denise Oakley
Editor’s note: It is National Teacher Appreciation Week. As part of the celebration, we profiled teachers throughout the state. Here’s one:
Denise Oakley, Sioux City Community School District
- Grade level taught: Currently I am teaching second grade. I have taught kindergarten through sixth grade.
- Subjects taught: I have taught all elementary core subjects.
- School: Perry Creek Elementary
- How many years have you been teaching: I have taught 33 years.
Why are you passionate about teaching?
Each day brings excitement and challenges. I am an important part of twenty children’s lives for nine months.
What have you learned during the past year teaching during the pandemic?
People adapt and rise to overcome adversities. Teachers and the families of our students bonded even more.
What do you think are keys to a student’s success and how do you help foster that?
Students thrive in a positive supportive environment where they feel valued and loved. Building relationships with my students enables us to grow beyond the classroom.
Over the years, how have you grown as an educator?
With experience comes knowledge. I learned to be willing to accept situations and be open to changes.
What opportunities do you see in the next few years in education?
With the challenges from the past year, districts and families they serve have become more tech savvy. I see even more emphasis on technological supports.
Who was your favorite teacher and why?
My favorite teacher happened to be both my kindergarten teacher and my fourth grade teacher, Mrs. Sutherland. She taught with experiences that seemed to always take learning beyond the textbooks. She celebrated all successes. I always felt valued.