School: Suzanne Middle
District: Walnut Valley Unified School District
County: Los Angeles County
Region: Southern California
Grade: Middle School
Subject: Math, Choir, Music
Award Year: 2007
“We are a community of engaged and enthusiastic learners. Through technology, working collaboratively, and even singing math songs, math ceases to be a spectator sport. We don’t just lean math, we do math. We need to discover how our students learn best. What their strengths and weaknesses are, and what motivates them to do well. Armed with this knowledge, we can help turn their challenges into successes.” –Helen Papadopoulos, from her 2007 California Teacher of the Year Application
“Helen Papadopoulos is an energetic, motivated, and funny math teacher who often brings levity to this challenging subject to make it less daunting for her students,” Superintendent Jack O’Connell said.
Mrs. Papadopoulos has taught 6th, 7th and 8th grade and all content areas. Theatre and Life Skills classes have been added to her repertoire. Teaching different content areas allows her to make connections across the curriculum and bring aspects of each area into the other.
She is passionate about Social Emotional Learning and the importance it has on educating the whole child. As children learn more about themselves and are able to identify and deal with their emotions, they will be better equipped to deal with their academic experiences. “As educators we need to learn the best ways to help our students navigate through not only their educational journey, but their emotional growth as well. We need to remember that we teach children, not just content.”