A traditional classroom setting isn’t a great fit for every student and Christine Stilwell, a special education teacher at Robert J. Lister Academy (RJLA), recognizes this and has adapted her teaching style to those who struggle with traditional learning. Christine has developed and modified curriculum to focus around Growth Mindset Thinking, which helps students realize by putting in more time and effort they can reach higher achievements. With this way of teaching, Christine has encouraged many of her students to further their education and others to participate in work training programs with jobs available after graduation.
One unique way Christine has taught her students is by making maple syrup through the RJLA Maple Sugar Makers program, which is a inter-disciplinary, hands-on, real-world teaching experience, where students take part in the entire maple syrup making process, from tapping trees to our finished product. Through this program, students can apply real-world meaning to data, science and history relating to the maple syrup and tree-tapping. Christine even organized a major fundraising campaign and wrote a grant to help the school purchase a sugar shack and top of the line equipment for maple sugaring
Christine’s mentality that every student with the right lesson plan can be successful is the reason why she was chosen as one of our 2020 Teachers Who Wow.