Ann Hushen and Karen Hines
The two second grade teachers at Rocky Mountain Academy of Evergreen (RMAE) were nominated as a team because together they set such good examples not only for the 48 children they teach but also for others at the school.
This dynamic duo discovered nine years ago that they worked well together, often bouncing ideas off one another when they taught different grade levels. Karen (left) has been teaching second grade at RMAE since the charter school opened 10 years ago; Ann began teaching at RMAE nine years ago, assigned to third graders for the first three years. When an opening for another second grade teacher was announced, she shifted to second grade in large part so she and Karen could work more closely together.
They both understand the need for flexibility, and their respective philosophies about teaching are similar. They refer to themselves as being "on the same page." They both embrace new methods of teaching; the use of smart boards, for instance, has introduced a new joy in teaching, they say.
Although Ann and Karen each have a class of 24 (across the hall from one another), they frequently collaborate on lesson planning, playing on the strengths and creativity of one another. Karen plays the piano, which goes hand in hand with Ann's supervision of two seasonal programs the youngsters put on, not just for family members but also for residents at Elk Run Assisted Living.
It is not uncommon for them to meet up on Saturdays, putting their heads together to create lesson plans. They take turns writing newsletters to parents. While teaching leaves little time for anything else, they are also PEO sisters in the philanthropic educational organization, Chapter HE.
They identify the relationship between themselves as "seamless," making their jobs especially enjoyable. This week we give a double salute to Ann and Karen!