Thursday, March 6, 2014
Editor's note: This is a continuation of a series profiling local teachers of the year.
Mallory Bodine has been teaching for only four years. However, she is already being recognized as one of the shining stars at Paul Knox Middle School.
The seventh grade science teacher was named the teacher of the year and she said it was a “real honor” that the staff thought so highly of her.
“We have amazing teachers, so it's a really tough competition,” she said.
Bodine is also a part of the Technology Expansion Project in the district. Bodine said that Paul Knox is currently the only middle school in the pilot.
“It lets me have a set of iPads, and we use those daily for their assignments,” she said. “It brings everything to education. My biggest message is STEM, which is science, technology, engineering and math. I'm a huge proponent of it, and everything I do is involved in some bigger project that the students are working on. Basically, I pose them STEM problems in which they research, design and communicate solutions and that would be difficult to do without the convenience of the technology.”
Bodine said the technology in her classroom allows her to easily access research, presentation tools and makes “everything flow easier.” It also frees her up to give more instruction time with the students.
“Technology really solves a lot of problems with education today,” she said. “It solves the motivation issue; they're in here and they want to use the technology. Discipline isn't a big issue because my kids are engaged in what they're doing. Academically, they're improving because they can write more thanks to just having to type it.”
Specifically with her science classes, Bodine said she sends out Google Docs that the students can type into. Students then submit their answers directly to her, and she can grade it electronically and read in real-time. Her students also work in collaborative groups and are their own time managers.
“I can pull a group to the side and discuss who is having issues and problems,” she said. “I can diversify the education while they are all moving at their own pace. It has given me more one-on-one time with the students.”
Scott Rodgers is the news editor at The North Augusta Star and has been with the paper since January 2013. Follow him on Twitter @NAStarRodgers.