January’s Really Good Teacher – Brandy Fredlund
“I never excelled in school as a child, but when I went into the 6th grade my teacher changed my life,” said January’s Really Good Teacher, Brandy Fredlund, when she was asked what she would like people to know about her. “He is the reason as to why I wanted to become a teacher, because not only did he make learning fun, but he inspired me to be a better person.”
We first heard about Brandy, a first year teacher at Noble Prentis Elementary School in Kansas City, Kansas, from her mentor and colleague Deborah Johnson who praised her work and attitude. “Our district this year has implemented a new standards based assessment program, which for most new teachers would seem overwhelming. Despite that, Brandy has taken all the changes with a smile and her ‘can do’ attitude.”
While Brandy’s smile and attitude may be what her colleagues notice about this First Grade Teacher, for her, the inspiration comes from her students. “What inspires me as a teacher is watching my students continue to grow and become successful learners,” she explained. “When a student comes to school the next day and is excited to share about a lesson we had done previously, because they knew the type of cloud outside, or the phase of the moon, or stage in a life cycle; it’s those things that are rewarding. I want to continue to inspire them to become successful.”
As any teacher knows, those tough days can wear you down, but Brandy admits that it is her students who save the day. “What gets me through the tough days is the smiles and hugs from my kiddos,” she said. “I also have a great support system from the staff of Noble Prentis Elementary.”
“[Brandy] is an amazingly organized teacher for a ‘newbie’, and is very compassionate. She has a challenging class of 25, with three students with special needs and at least seven or eight ESL students,” her mentor, Deborah, said. It comes as no surprise then that when asked what she would like student teachers to know about teaching she said, “I think the most important piece of information I can give to a student teacher is organization. I thought I had everything organized when I student taught, but once you have your own classroom you realize how much stuff you have and it can get overwhelming. Find a system that works best for you and your kiddos.”
Brandy, we are honored to feature you as January’s Really Good Teacher and wish you a long teaching career filled with success and recognition. Thank you for being a great example of what a teacher should be. Congratulations!