Fifth-grade teacher Jody Solmonson of Bear Valley Elementary School in Anchorage was the district's first teacher to earn National Board Certification. Over the years, Mrs. Solmonson has devised a comprehensive learning system that merges basic skills and the study of classics with new pedagogical practices. The reading list, which includes Shakespeare's plays and historical works, complements a social studies curriculum that spans Western civilization. Individualized writing instruction holds each child to high standards, and she teaches for understanding with her hands-on science and math programs. Independent and group projects help students develop self-management and team skills, and foster a love of learning. Mrs. Solmonson also mentors beginning teachers, and conducts professional training.
1978 University of Arizona, B.A.