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Joni Cooke

Joni Cooke (ME '98)


Turner Elementary School
Turner, ME

Subject(s) taught: General Elementary
Grade(s): 4

At the time of the Award, Joni Cooke was:

Turner Elementary School
Turner, ME

Subject(s) taught: Science
Grade(s): 4, 5, 6

Biographical Information

Joni Cooke, science teacher at Leeds Central School in Leeds, expands her students' horizons far beyond their rural community. Ms. Cooke's classes were among a handful around the nation selected to pilot the 1998 National Geographic Kids Network, a series of scientific research projects in which students use cutting edge technology to interact with a global community of student scientists. Ms. Cooke's students also participate in NASA's Learning Technology projects and develop video and multimedia presentations. She regularly engages her students in scientific competitions, in which one of her students recently received a $5,000 scholarship under her guidance. Ms. Cooke is a member of several professional organizations, including the Maine Science Teachers Association and The Leadership Consortium.

Personal Message

The 1998 Milken Educator Award was just the beginning. In 1999, I was selected as a Presidential Awardee for Elementary Science. In 2001, I was awarded State Finalist for Maine Teacher of the Year Award. Then many of my former students nominated me many times for the Who’s Who Among America’s Teachers. In 2004, I was honored by the U.S. Army and Sinclair Broadcasting - Maine Radio Station Wolf 99 awarded me the Golden Apple. It is a award given to a teacher nominated from their listening audience.

Additional Information


1988 University of Maine - Farmington, B.A.