There are numerous teachers at Lake shore that go above and beyond to teach their students. Many teachers teach to their full extent and love seeing their students improve. Lake Shore’s teacher of the year award gives teachers the recognition that they deserve for putting so much hard work in. This year’s teach of the year was awarded to Lake Shore’s choir director, Matthew Smith.
“It’s truly an honor,” states Smith. “Being nominated by my peers and colleagues for that award and then being selected for it really means a lot to me. Also, to be recognized for the hard work that I am putting in, but I know that I’m not the only teacher in this building deserving of this award. It’s very humbling to stand out from the crowd like that. I definitely wish that we could give more than one because I definitely feel that a lot of teachers in the building deserve the same award.”
Smith has his favorite moments as a teacher. He explains, “It’s the “aha!” moment. When students are working hard on something and their plugging and grinding and just chugging away at it. There’s challenge after challenge and they finally get. There’s that moment of of “aha!” when they finally get that sense of pride and achievement. Then watching them pushing themselves even harder and even further to get to the next goal. I love seeing the growth.”
Smith and his class put in a tremendous amount of effort into the Mary Poppins musical. “The musical went really well it was phenomenal! The kids really stepped it up they worked hard. Considering we had a small cast, they made the magic happen. We had great audiences and I couldn’t be happier how it ended up and it really gets me excited for next years show,” Smith explains.
Smith students’ also recognizes the hard work he put in for them to be successful. Brianna Morgan explains, “I believe Mr. Smith deserves teacher of the year because not many teachers would go out of their way in order to keep students engaged in something that they love to do. It really shows me that for Mr. Smith, it’s not just a job. It’s his passion to get students excited about learning new things. He cares about the students’ well being and not just about the music. He makes sure every student is on top of their academics in other classes as well. Mr. Smith also ensures that the program is diverse and welcoming. It takes courage and brilliance to be the teacher students look up to and luckily for Lake Shore, that person is Mr. Smith!”
Morgan also explains what makes Smith a good teacher, “Mr. Smith is that he is kind, involved, and willing to go the extra mile. He will take his lunch, come in before school or stay in after school to make sure you become the best version of yourself vocally and in general.”
Madison Walton also explains if she thinks Smith deserves the teacher of the year award. She states, “Of course Mr. Smith deserves teacher of the year award. He’s a great director he connects with all of his students. I remember last year, I was too nervous to do chamber choir. I went to Mr. Smith to try out, and he was giving useful advice for me to calm down.”
Walton explains the different qualities Smith has as a teacher, “He helps us improve on not just singing, but on being better people. He teaches us to strive and reach our full potential, even when it’s difficult at times.”
Many teachers at Lake Shore are worthy of the teacher of the year award, but Matthew Smith qualities as a teacher and a person was prominent to many.