As one of three teachers at this African-centered school, Rasheki Kuykendall energizes learning among her fifth- through eighth-grade students in math, language arts, science and social studies. Her instructional strategies include exciting activities such as kinesthetic whole-body games and relays, as well as one-on-one tutoring, field trips, follow-up classroom assignments, and multimedia projects. Each year under her tutelage, students have shown a marked increase in math and reading test scores, and by the eighth grade, 100 percent of her students were accepted at the high school of their choice. Her inspiring manner has motivated students not only to enter academic competitions but to excel, taking top prizes in a citywide science fair and a geography bee. Each weekend, Ms. Kuykendall leads a club for sixth through eighth graders called The Black Madonnas and Young Lions. Named after a self-help book written by the school's principal, the club helps instill certain values and skills among young people, from having self-respect for oneself and for others to giving back to the community, setting goals and managing time effectively. Ms. Kuykendall is an outstanding educator who is simultaneously nurturing the roots of African pride and academic excellence among her students.