The fourth-graders in Maria Ferrandini's class at Charles C. Cashman Elementary School in Amesbury are not only wiser thanks to the efforts of their teacher, they are also healthier. Ms. Ferrandini developed a lesson unit entitled "Food and Fitness," which received a substantial grant from the state of Massachusetts. The lesson teaches children the value of nutrition and exercise by having them work in cooperative groups based on nutrition- or exercise-related themes. Ms. Ferrandini has also developed numerous projects, such as plays, art shows, math nights and a weekly newsletter, to get parents more involved in their children's education. Ms. Ferrandini is active in the Amesbury Mentor Program, which pairs new teachers with experienced ones.
1969 University of Massachusetts at Lowell, B.A.