2011 Really Good Teacher: Linda Hawkins
We all remember our favorite teachers from elementary school, and for many adults in Selbyville, DE, Linda Hawkins is the one they return to say hello to and to thank. “I have had students whose parents’ had her and they have to go and hug Ms. Hawkins,” explained Heather, the teacher who nominated Linda. “I have heard them say, every time, thank you for making a difference in my life.” With over 30 years of teaching under her belt, Ms. Linda Hawkins is truly a 2011 Really Good Teacher.
The impact that she has had on students’ lives surprises her too. “What surprised me the most is that I was able to touch so many young people in such a positive way through-out my career,” she said. When asked why she became a teacher, Linda recognized the impact that one of her teachers had on her during her elementary years. “I feel I became a teacher because of the positive roll models (family and family friends) around me. I also had a fourth grade teacher that told me I could accomplish anything as long as I worked hard and never gave up. She was right.”
Linda transfers that same desire to work hard and never give up to her students. “She teaches the kids not only about academics but she teaches them how to be a lifelong learner,” Heather said about her Third Grade partner. “I would advise new teachers to really care, be fair, and enjoy their students,” Linda said. “Set high expectations and the children will strive to reach them. Students are our future so be very careful how you nourish them.”
The desire to reach all of her students was clearly evident when she was asked what her best teaching tip would be for others. “The best tip I could give anyone that wants to teach is…It’s easy to love the bright, gifted, and outgoing child,” she admitted. “My challenge to you is really get to know the hard to handle child. The little one that seeks your attention for all the wrong reasons. Children must feel that you think they are important, that they are somebody special, and then they begin to behave.”
Linda, thank you for your dedication and your commitment to so many children throughout your career. It is an honor to recognize you as a 2011 Really Good Teacher.