Janna Hamrick’s innovative approach to education contributes to the high achievement growth of fifth grade students at Rock Branch Elementary School, a 2021 National Blue Ribbon School. According to the 2022-23 West Virginia General Summative Assessment, Rock Branch’s fifth grade mathematics proficiency is not only among the highest in Putnam County, but also in the state. That is because Hamrick’s classroom is in a constant state of motion: Whether students are engaging in hands-on classroom activities like Jeopardy to master comprehension or consistently interacting with Hamrick to track their progress, they are developing skills to become solutions-driven critical thinkers. Weaving in her own personal stories and experiences, Hamrick has her eye on the whole child, skillfully humanizing the classroom and building a strong, approachable rapport with students.
Hamrick’s energy in the classroom serves as motivation for students and teachers alike to continuously grow as learners and educators. Rock Branch utilizes the Eureka Math curriculum, an initiative that benefits greatly from Hamrick’s leadership and expertise. She researches best practices and shares her knowledge by training and presenting to teachers and schools across the county on how to implement Eureka Math in their own classrooms. Hamrick also leads professional development for her colleagues, working together to plan lessons and target strategic analysis of student data. Most notably, she has become a reliable and accessible resource for students, teachers, and parents. Ensuring that her classroom is a teamwork-driven environment, she encourages parent involvement by opening her classroom for their observation and initiating meetings before and after school to answer questions regarding her instructional methods.
Hamrick’s school-level involvement is integral to its success. She serves on the leadership team, is a member of the intermediate professional learning community, and participates on the student assistance team and safety committee. Additionally, she works as Rock Branch’s webmaster, updating the school and surrounding community with important news, events and reminders. As a member of the local school improvement council, Hamrick has helped build strong relationships with organizations and businesses and collaborates with a local church each Christmas to send boxes overseas to countries in need.
Hamrick earned a Bachelor of Arts in elementary education K-6 in 2008 and a Master of Arts in secondary math education 5-9 through Algebra 1 in 2011, both from Marshall University.
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