The Mason Schools Foundation recently recognized Mason educators for going “above and beyond!” During the Mason City Schools’ annual staff recognition breakfast, Mason Early Childhood Center first grade teacher BJ Smallwood, the Western Row team of Kristen Lazuta and Diana Hillenmeyer, Mason Middle School Spanish teacher Lauren Richardson, and Mason High School AP science teachers Aimee Hansen and DeeDee Messer were were surprised with $200 minigrants and recognition in front of their peers.
“The Mason Schools Foundation is honored to recognize these amazing teachers in a year with a record number of heartfelt nominations!” said Mason Schools Foundation President Mindy Patton.
Below are excerpts from some of the nominations.
About B.J. Smallwood
"Mr. Smallwood is extraordinary. We have been consistently impressed with his attentiveness to our child's needs in the classroom that often go unnoticed or unaddressed in classrooms! He views his "kids" for their strengths and sees opportunity for growth every day. He makes a point to communicate these to our child consistently, and to us in phone calls, emails and through classroom communications."
About Kristen Lazuta & Diana Hillenmeyer
"I am grateful for these two amazing teachers who help us insider and outside the school. They strive for excellence in all areas of their students lives. They truly are Super Heroes that have power beyond the classroom. This team is making their students believe in themselves and to truly be a Super Hero in school. Character building is what they do!"
About Lauren Richardson
"Senora Richardson is a teacher who takes EACH and every one of her students above and beyond. She gives to her students not only in the classroom... where she stays after school to let us get extra help, where she is energetic EVERY SINGLE DAY to keep us engaged, and where she helps us excel beyond our imaginations, but also in clubs and sporting events. She takes out two hours of her evening every day before tests to give us an extra form of preparation, quizlet live. As an advisor, Senora is an important part of us carrying out our projects and an expert in helping us learning more about the world of giving. She attends out sporting events both school related and not. This means she is out there on that Saturday morning in Columbus to root us on.
About Aimee Hansen
"Mrs. Hansen truly goes above ad beyond not only for her own students, but for kids throughout the school district and even alumni. She provides a fun environment, with plenty of jokes and toys to relieve the stress but she's also an obsessive chemist - her enthusiasm for science and passion for teaching kids chemistry makes AP Chem the most enjoyable class for everyone who has taken it. Her support outside the classroom is what distinguishes Mrs. Hansen from other teachers - she is after school nearly every day, whether it's helping her students learning the content or watching over and helping Science Olympiad kids. This year has been an especially special year, even by Hansen Stands since she's organized the Mason Intermediate ScienceFest.
About DeeDee Messer
"Mrs. DeeDee Messer is a truly inspirational teacher. Whether helping a confused student or assisting at a charity event, she gives her best. With Mrs. Messer as my teacher, I will never be more confident walking into an AP exam than I will when taking the AP Physics exam. We know we're prepared right because she gives us parts of her summer to be the Head Reader for the free response questions on both the AP Physics C: Mechanics an AP Physics C: E&M exams. Through our projects, such as building a catapult or constructing a Rube Goldberg machine, she has been teaching us life skills like how to with work groups, how to complete a seemingly impossible task, and how to apply out knowledge outside of a classroom setting.