Greenwood Elementary School second grade teacher Leah Bearden is the March Lakewood Rotary E
ducator of the Month.
“Leah Bearden is an outstanding teacher and she is totally committed to the success of each and every student, not only in her class but in our entire school community. Leah is a teacher whom I have to literally kick out of the building late in the evening as she plans, researches and shares new and innovative teaching strategies and resources,” said Lisa Boyd, Greenwood Elementary principal.
“Last year, Leah had four students that had seriously debilitating home situations or medical issues that presented a variety of obstacles to their success. She used personal signals and success strategies for each one. Each of those students shared with me that they had a great first grade year because Ms. Bearden believed that they could do it. One student told me, ‚ÄòI knew that when she pushed that clicker, that I was supposed to move on to the next thing and try my hardest. It really helped me.'”
Originally from New Mexico, Bearden became interested in education through volunteering at a local elementary school.
She discovered she loved working with children in a classroom setting, and then left the banking field to become a teacher. She had been a nurse before becoming a banker.
She has been teaching in the Clover Park District for 12 years. Previously she taught kindergarten and first grade. She has worked at Clarkmoor and Parkway Elementary Schools.
“There are some similarities between nursing and teaching. I used to work with new moms as a nurse. I taught them how to care for infants and dealing with special conditions,” said Bearden.
For Bearden, one word sums up her teaching style & strategy.
“My students know that strategy is my favorite word. It’s the way that I view life. You see a problem or challenge and you figure a strategy to solve it. That’s what I teach my students. No matter what we are learning there are always strategies to bring us along. It’s something they can use all their lives,” said Bearden.