Teachers wear many hats in their classrooms. Most are figurative – instructor, mediator, confidant, cheerleader – but some are literal, and it’s that ability to create a fun learning environment that makes Cheryl Silvia, a Prekindergarten teacher at the South Easton KinderCare® Learning Center in Massachusetts, one of the best of the best.
“She creates a lot of fun for the classroom,” said her Center Director Terri Partridge. “She dresses up; she brings in in a big box with lots of surprises in it for story time. The kids can’t wait to sit down and say, ‘What is Ms. Cheryl wearing today?’ ‘What is Ms. Cheryl pulling out of that box today?’ ‘What’s going to happen in our day?’”
Not only does Cheryl bring a sense of wonder and excitement to her classroom, she’s also a pillar of support for the other teachers in her center and her district. She also goes above and beyond what is required. Her ability to support her coworkers and her students, as well as her passion and enthusiasm for teaching, earned Cheryl the 2013 Knowledge Universe Early Childhood Educator Award.
According to District Manager Jane McCarthy, Cheryl focuses on the specific the needs of the children she teachers and caters the curriculum to their abilities. A KinderCare teacher since 2002, Cheryl has learned how to move at a pace that is comfortable for the children in her classroom.
While the Educator Award recognizes the top KinderCare teachers around the country, for Cheryl, it means something more.
“It recognizes the effort, the preparation, the planning, the worrying about the children in various ways,” she said. “[It’s about] standing behind the children and constantly rooting for them, waiting for that child to be successful in learning.”
Photo credit: Courtesy of Getty Images for Knowledge Universe®.
2013 Early Childhood Educator Award Winner: