Top Teacher: Shauna Swinimer - Saratoga Independent School | WNYT.com

Top Teacher: Shauna Swinimer - Saratoga Independent School

Sam Hesler
Updated: March 23, 2022 02:01 PM
Created: March 20, 2022 12:40 PM

"I believe in you." That's what Shauna Swinimer wants her students to know. 

"Making sure that message is conveyed, no matter what the class looks like, no matter what the day looks like, whether we are at home or at school, there are people here that love you and value you for who you are," Swinimer explained.

Ms. Swinimer has been a kindergarten teacher at the Saratoga Independent School for more than 20 years, and through various activities like creative writing centers, she's created a safe environment for students to learn and grow. 

"I'm writing about plants and that they can grow with soil, sun, and water," exclaimed Victoria, one of Ms. Swinimer's students. 

"She helps me when I need help sounding out words," added Maeve, during writing center time. 

Whether it was meeting with students virtually, one-on-one during the first months of the pandemic, or teaching them in person, Ms. Swinimer always makes it a point to make sure her students feel comfortable no matter what level of learning they are at. 

"One of the things that I love the most about teaching this age is that we get to encourage each other," she said. 

All of her former students will tell you her lessons and encouragement help pave an important path to success. 

"I think it's good to have a good experience in kindergarten, because if you have a bad experience in kindergarten, then you're going to have a bad experience in 1st grade and 2nd grade," explained Sasha Lefner, an 8th grader.

"That's where it starts. So you've got to build upon all the stuff you learn in kindergarten," added Max Greenblatt, another 8th grader.


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