Michigan math and sciences teachers receive national recognition

Posted on Tuesday, 1/7/2014 6:02 PM

Different educators have their own approaches to teaching that make them successful. While many of these instructors are deserving of recognition, only a few are fortunate enough to receive attention on a national scale.  

In Michigan, two educators are giving their state's education sector a good name thanks to recognition from the Presidential Awards for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching.

Brian Peterson, science teacher
The PAEMST chose to honor Brian Peterson, a fifth-grade teacher at Musson Elementary School, as well as an instructor at Oakland University, according to the Detroit Free Press. Peterson has always had a passion for science, going back to his childhood when he chose to spend time learning about nature instead of indoors playing video games.

"The greatest thing about science is the hands-on," Peterson told the news source. "You get to do activities and experiments and try things. It's OK to fail once in a while ... because that's how we learn."

A White House press release states that Peterson and his fellow honorees receive $10,000 to use however they would like. With this money, these educators can take steps to improve academic achievement, whether that means updating classroom materials such as student software or funding professional development.

Emily Theriault-Kimmey, math teacher
For the past 13 years, Emily Theriault-Kimmey has been teaching math at Pattengill Elementary School, The Ann Arbor News reported. However, it's her efforts to promote math, science and technology within her district that helped her gain the PAEMST's attention.

According to the Detroit Free Press, Theriault-Kimmey accepted the award on the behalf of those who have influenced her, such as fellow educators and students.

"I will continue to pass on the passion for education that they have instilled in me," said Theriault-Kimmey, as quoted by the news outlet.

Influencing future success
Theriault-Kimmey is not the only one being influenced. In a statement, President Barack Obama said that the recipients of the awards are influencing today's students. Thanks to their inspiring approach to teaching, Obama believes they are helping build a "promising future for all our children."

Beyond Michigan, other award recipients include Natalie Harr and Elizabeth Pitzer of Ohio and Susan Bauer and Michael Soskil of Pennsylvania. Surely, other teachers can learn from these instructors and the difference they are making in their classrooms.

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