Kathy M. Derby, first-grade teacher at Anderson School in Bozeman, describes teaching as "the toughest job I'll ever love." Through shared reading and writing experiences in small- and large-group settings, Mrs. Derby models good reading and writing skills for her students and guides them in improving their skills with the use of developmentally appropriate materials. She also uses hands-on, kit-based experiences and guided discovery to teach math and science concepts. To assess her students' progress, she combines authentic observations with discussions and reading and writing inventories, and collects samples of work throughout the year to demonstrate progress to parents. As grants coordinator for the school's Artist-in-Residence program, Mrs. Derby secures funding to bring local artists to the school for long-term visits. She is a member of the National Reading Association and Delta Kappa Gamma.