The first Teacher of the Week we have from Madison County Central School after the holidays is first grade teacher, Jaukena Gainey. Ms. Gainey refers to herself as a rookie teacher as this is only her second year of teaching and came to MCCS with a vision of finding a way every day to reach at least one child in her classroom. She likens her philosophy on teaching to planting and caring for crops. As a farmer uses different seasons and nutrients to grow the best crops they can, Ms. Gainey believes teachers should use skills and methods to teach children based on their individual needs. When teaching in the classroom, Ms. Gainey believes creativity is one of her greatest strengths because she said she often finds herself in the middle of a teaching lesson and out of nowhere she thinks of a totally different way to teach the lesson. “Going with the flow” and analyzing data in order to increase results are also some of her self-described strengths. Ms. Gainey feels the difference between a good teacher and an outstanding teacher is, “a good teacher teaches, but a great teacher goes beyond the academics and builds lasting positive relationships with children and instills strong morals and self-confidence in them so that they will believe that no matter how big the task, they can and WILL be somebody.” Interests outside the classroom for Ms. Gainey are cooking, which she describes as her “escape from reality,” and her son who she says is “the most amazing six-year-old she knows” and that a lot of her motivation comes from wanting a better childhood and future for him than what she had. The second chosen Teacher of the Week is fourth grade teacher, Tyhesha Judge-Fogle. Ms. Fogle is also the girl’s volleyball coach, which is appropriate, since her days in high school were spent partly in basketball, softball, volleyball and track. Ms. Fogle’s academic time in high school was not as successful as she said she experienced a lot of frustration and was often times embarrassed because of how little she felt she knew or that she was not as far along as her classmates. Her decision to become a teacher was to “alleviate the frustration (some) kids may feel, along with the anxiety that they may have.” Her desire is to make their academic experience more enjoyable and relevant by bringing the real world into the classroom. Ms. Fogle believes all students are capable of learning and can be successful in an engaged, inviting and safe classroom. She said that teaching students the joy of learning is what will make them become lifetime learners. Teachers “never giving up” by researching and implementing different strategies in order to capture their students attention, is what Ms. Fogle believes creates an outstanding teacher. She says teachers need to dedicate time to teach different and innovative methods in order for students to use 100 percent of their potential and to remain interested in school. The person she looks up to and would most like to emulate is another MCCS educator, Ms. Katrina Aikens. She said Aikens inspires her students not only academically, but also spiritually and she hopes someday to be as humble as Aikens, not just as an educator, but also showing students the gift of God’s love.