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Buffalo Ridge Nominates Jacoway for Apple Award

First grade teacher Jennifer Jacoway was nominated for the Apple Award.

by Carin Kirkegaard

Jennifer Jacoway, a first grade teacher at Buffalo Ridge Elementary School (BRE), was nominated to represent the school at the 2008-2009 Douglas County Educational Foundation (DCEF) Apple Awards ceremony on March 14.

Jacoway comes from a family of educators and has been teaching at BRE for seven years. As a little girl, Jacoway played school in her mother’s classroom. As she grew, she witnessed the on-going relationships that her mother fostered with her own students. Seeing how much her mother touched the lives of those she taught, inspired Jacoway to pursue her own career in teaching.

For her entire 11-year teaching career, Jacoway has been teaching first grade. She sees first grade as a year of great learning growth in each child. There are students who start first grade in August barely reading and writing, who by January are reading books and writing sentences. “I love this age,” said Jacoway, “it is incredible to see the lights come on for each student” as the year progresses.

In a classroom with various levels of students, Jacoway strives to recognize each individual’s needs and then adjust her teaching to make sure each child is being reached. After spending an entire year volunteering as a parent helper in Jacoway’s classroom, CPN resident Tammy Abramovitz was compelled to nominate Jacoway for the DCEF Apple Award.

“I have observed a level of professional and personal dedication that deserves to be acknowledged and honored. From her ability to support the gifted and talented to her service of the special needs population, Jen supports the spirit of each and every child she teaches,” said Abramovitz.

Jacoway is the first to commend the support she gets from the community as instrumental in her success as a teacher. She views the relationship between a school and its community as a partnership in a child’s educational process. “A child’s achievement depends upon the quality of interpersonal relationships, the depth of the school’s staff, parental support and the quality of materials, resources and facilities,” said Jacoway.

In the end, it’s the relationships she makes with her students that calls Jacoway to work each day. “She’s a great teacher,” said Ryan Tierney, a first grader in her classroom. “She gives a lot of homework. If I had a cell phone, I would have my ring tone be ‘Hail to the Chief’.”

Jacoway holds a Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education from Washington State University and a Master of Arts in Technology in Education from Lesley University.

The DCEF Golden Apple Award ceremony will be at the Hyatt Regency located in the Denver Tech Center. The Apple Awards is a fundraising event that traditionally raises between $80,000 and $100,000 each year. The proceeds directly benefit Douglas County schools.



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