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Teacher of the Year: Other Outstanding Nominees

01/25/2017 10:30AM ● Published by Hood Magazine

Mrs. Andre, Kindergarten
Liberty Elementary School
“Mrs. Andre is one of the best teachers I've ever met. Our son is deaf and was welcomed immediately into the class. Not only was Mrs. Andre open to implementing ASL into the daily curriculum but she and her family have been attending the ASL classes at the South Dakota School for the Deaf with us and other families of deaf children.”
Nominated by Riley W.

Mrs. Berkness, 3rd Grade
Tri-Valley Elementary School
“Mrs. Berkness is an amazing teacher. She cares about me so much. I had surgery before school started and she came and visited me in the hospital.”
Nominated by Bethany C.

Mr. Binde, 3rd Grade
Tea Area Intermediate School
“Mr. Binde has the passion and drive even though this is his 11th year teaching. He remembers and keeps up with his students academically and socially. There is no other teacher more deserving.”
Nominated by Nick and James D.

Mrs. Burwitz, First Grade
Harrisburg Horizon Elementary School
“I really like Mrs. Burwitz because she is always here for us. When we do something good, she is always proud of us.”
Nominated by Ella S.

Mrs. Buseman, Kindergarten
Marion Elementary School
“Mrs. Buseman has an incredible way of meeting each kid where he or she is. She teaches reading, writing and math, but she also builds character, compassion and confidence.  Every moment is a teachable moment and it shows in the great growth her students through the year.”
Nominated by Breton

Mrs. Darling, 1st Grade
Brandon Elementary School
“My teacher is amazing because she helps me with everything and always has time for ME! She does lots of fun projects and is always coming up with great things to do with my class.”
Nominaed by Micah R.

Miss Dhoore, Preschool
Honey Bee Academy, Brandon
“Sammi always has a smile, even at the end of the day, that gives kids and parents a fun, inviting feeling. She is very helpful in both morning and evening during children transition.”
Nominated by Jon C.

Mr. Drew, 6th Grade
Patrick Henry Middle School
“Mr. Drew is really funny. He tells jokes a lot and makes learning fun. He helps us join together as a team in Orchestra by helping us as individuals to make everybody better.”
Nominated by Mickila D.

Mrs. Eckland, Preschool
Hayward Elementary
“She is very understanding of my child with special needs she answers my text messages emails and phone calls.”
Nominated by Blake

Mrs. Edwards, First Grade
Montrose Elementary School
“My teacher is the greatest teacher in the whole world! Let me tell you why...... because she helps me to be my best. She stretches my brain and helps me make connections to the real world.”
Nominated by Jaxon S.

Mrs. Enebo, First Grade
Liberty Elementary School
“She is super sweet and easy to talk to. She has a huge heart and would do whatever it took to make the children succeed.”
Nominated by Teyven L.

Mrs. Gappa, Junior Kindergarten
Robert Bennis Elementary School
“My child has learned so much in the last couple of months it just amazes me. He loves going to school and his teacher!! I am so greatful she is my son's first teacher and has set him up for success in school!!”
Nominated by Carter

Ms. Greenfield, Second Grade
Sonia Sotomayor
“She academically challenges my daughter way beyond what I thought they would be doing.  She takes the time to explain to parents her process and give us tips to follow using those same skills and practices.”
Nominated by Diem A.

Mrs. Kockx, First Grade
Liberty Elementary School
“Mrs. Kockx's patience with our son and obvious love for teaching and her children has definitely contributed to our son's new found love for school and learning.
Nominated by Link W.

Mr. Kramer, Third Grade
Brandon Elementary School
“I think Mr. Kramer is the best because he makes learning fun; he makes sure it's fair and he makes sure that we understand what he means and that is why I nominate Mr. Kramer for Teacher of the Year.”
“Mr. Kramer goes above and beyond to engage his class. My daughter absolutely loves his class and all of the fun activities he plans.”
Nominated by Jackson B. and Ayva L.

Mrs. Kuhlman, First Grade
Avon Elementary School
“Mrs. Kuhlman is an outstanding teacher!  We feel so lucky to have her teach our kids!  So far, she has had 3 of our 5 children in her class.  She gives all that she has to her students and makes learning fun! She incorporates many fun, hands on learning tools that the kids really enjoy.” 
Nominated by Easton S.

Mrs. Leite, Second Grade
Hillcrest Elementary School, Brookings
“She's fun and engaging yet has understood expectations for her students. And she has an open door for her students' families.”
Nominated by Aubrey G.

Ms. Lenards, Fourth Grade
Christ the King
“She makes funny jokes and is very organized. She also is the best because she prints fun games for upcoming holidays.  She teaches us about educational things.”
Nominated by All

Ms. Lesnar, Pre-K
Baltic Elementary School
“Ms. Lesnar makes learning fun with lots of songs and hands on activities. I always look forward to going to school because I know I'm going to have fun and learn new things.”
Nominated by Ayden O. 

Mr. Lindemann, 9-12 Grade
O’Gorman High School
“We are now nominating him, even after our children have graduated and gone on to successful years in college, thanks in part to Mr. Lindeman's preparing them for higher education. He is one of the most caring, kind, dedicated, motivating, inspiring teachers in addition to being a superior teacher in the most difficult of math classes.”
Nominated by the Fritsch family

Miss Lonna, Junior Kindergarten
Blessed Redeemer Lutheran Preschool
“Miss Lonna is kind to me. She smiles a lot, she reads us fun books, and lets us make crafts.  She teaches us about Jesus and we learn fun songs, too.”
Nominated by Kamryn

Mrs. Lundquist, First Grade
Lennox Elementary School
“She is the most kind teacher who loves children. She really takes the time to get to know each child and adapts her teaching style to best fit with their personality in order to ensure they receive the best education.”
Nonimated by Ryleigh B.

Mrs. McCollister, Fourth Grade
Harrisburg Horizon Elementary School
“I nominate my teacher to be Teacher of the Year because she is always there if someone is not getting it. She is always to help them.”
Nominated by Lily S.

Miss Nicole, Preschool
Honey Bee Academy, Brandon
“She is loving, nurturing and makes the day fun filled with tons of extra activities including art, music, kids in the kitchen and field trips. I couldn't imagine ever bringing my kids to any other daycare/preschool. Nicole is AMAZING!!”
Nominated by William

Mrs. Nielsen, Kindergarten
Harrisburg Horizon Elementary School
“Oh where do I start... She loves teaching and has a way to get her students to love to learn. I've seen firsthand (with my own daughter).”
Nominated by Paige V.

Mrs. Petersen, Second and Third Grade
Endeavor Elementary School
“My teacher is the best teacher because she encourages us to learn. She pushed us to set goals and helps us to succeed. Mrs. Petersen sends special notes to every student. She treats us respectfully and with kindness.”
Nominated by Griffin S.

Ms. Postma, Kindergarten
Horizon Elementary School
“Ms. Postma walks into the classroom each day full of energy and enthusiasm. She truly loves teaching and as a result her students love learning. Even when faced with challenges, she doesn't give up but rather continues to try other strategies until she finds the one that works.”
Nominated by Zander D.

Mrs. Severied, Preschool
Sanborn Central
“Mrs. Severied is the most caring teacher I have ever known. She currently has 17 preschoolers in a very small rural classroom. She loves all her students as if they are her own grandchildren.”
Nominated by Kaylee and Whitney A.

Mrs. Siebenborn, Fifth Grade
Hayward Elementary School
“Mrs. S” as she is referred to by her students has a demonstrated commitment to serving students in her school and making sure they know they are loved and can reach for their dreams.” 
Nominated by Andrew W.

Mrs. Stoops, Grades 6-12
Summit Oaks School
“Marla Stoops has it all. She is amazing. She always comes to school with a smile on her face, welcoming every student into her room with a warm heart.”
Nominated by Renee B.
Mrs. Taylor, Preschool
Building Blocks in Brandon
“I love my teacher because she takes time to teach me new things, and makes learning fun!”
Nominated by Ryker R.

Mr. Tjaden, All Grades
Dell Rapids Elementary School
“Mr. Tjaden makes every day fun for the entire school. He implements amazing programs and goes above and beyond for his students.”
Nominated by Ella L.
Mrs. Tomkins, Third Grade
Harvey Dunn Elementary
“Mrs. Tomkins is really nice. She is really good at trying to challenge us and figuring out what we're best at and what we're not as good at so we can grow.”
Nominated By Addi D.

Mrs. Winkleman, Early Childhood
Pettigrew Elementary School
“Alicia displays incredible patience and resourcefulness in finding ways to meet each child right where they're at and serve their unique needs as best she can.”
Nominated by Lyric F.

Mrs. Zenk, Kindergarten
Tri Valley School District
“She has great communication with parents. She updates us with the good and the bad. She sends us pictures to see what the kids are up to. They are learning so much from her. My son loves to go to school.  She speaks with her and is very comfortable!”
Nominated by Aiden J.

Education, In Print, Today teacher of the year Nominees