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A Lifelong Learner’s Thoughts

Amanda Denney is an educator who motivates students to do their best online, in the classroom and in life.

Teacher: Amanda Denney
From: United States
School: Quality Schools International
Subjects: Secondary English language arts (literature and writing), government and economics

What inspired you to become a teacher?

I became a teacher for the same reason most of us become teachers: I was inspired by those who taught me. I’m very lucky that I had so many fantastic teachers growing up. These men and women inspired me to be a lifelong learner, and I wanted to do the same for teenagers.

What is the most special Teachers’ Day gift? Why is it so special?

My favorite gifts from students are personalized notes and drawings that I get. I’ve gotten some truly funny and creative ones over the years, and I have these posted in my house and at work to remind me of all the unique, wonderful students I have taught.

Are you doing any online teaching now because of the COVID-19 pandemic? How do you like it? What is the biggest challenge of teaching online?

Teachers at QSI have been online since February 5, and it has definitely been a huge adjustment. Before, we were right there with our students guiding them through lessons and giving immediate feedback. Even though we have technology to bring us together, it isn’t always reliable and has been frustrating at times. We are all having to learn new computer skills, and the workload for everyone has increased. Still, I can honestly say I’ve seen my students complete their best work all year in the past few months. Many of them have really grown into independent, resourceful scholars and I couldn’t be prouder of what they have accomplished so far. Though online learning is a challenge, they have really put forth tremendous effort to keep going.