A passion for education pulled Crystal Simpson out of the business world and into the teaching profession, to the benefit of her fifth-grade students at Fontenelle Elementary School in Omaha, Nebraska. Combining a wide variety of instructional strategies with excellent classroom management skills, Simpson met the educational needs of all her students by engaging them in differentiated lessons and creative, explorative, hands-on activities. In a classroom filled with computers, Simpson integrated technology into much of her teaching, and made several presentations at local and state conferences on integrating technology into the elementary classroom. Her students showed improved test scores on the California Achievement Test (CAT), and their success rates on criterion-referenced tests in reading and math were above the school average. Skilled at relating to groups from widely varied socioeconomic and ethnic backgrounds, Simpson made numerous presentations to parents and the community regarding grade-level standards, assessments and the role of parents in students' academic success. She also made herself available to students at any time of the day by giving them both her cell and home phone numbers. A grade-level leader and a member of several school committees, Simpson also participated on district committees related to diversity, technology and reading and language arts curriculum selection. Thanks to her instruction, students left fifth grade with an academic skill base that prepared them for success in subsequent grades.
2003 University of Nebraska - Omaha, B.S.