We are proud to introduce our twenty-first Sunday Spotlight, featuring Stephanie Lerch who is a teacher in Red Bud Illinois. Stephanie is a proponent of growth mindset and student ownership. This year she helped to raise students’ PARCC scores by 30%! Get to know more about Stephanie in this week’s Sunday Spotlight!
8th Grade Math Teacher
Red Bud Elementary
Red Bud, Illinois
11 years working in education
” I love that I am able to use my talents to help others discover theirs! Nothing is better than seeing students discover their confidence, build it, and realize their potential.”
Get to know Stephanie Lerch
What do you love about working in education? What motivates you?
I love that I am able to use my talents to help others discover theirs! Nothing is better than seeing students discover their confidence, build it, and realize their potential.
Why did you become a teacher?
I became a teacher because I’ve always loved to learn, and I wanted to share that love with others.
What is your “Edulastic story”?
I learned about Edulastic at a technology conference. Our district was beginning the process of going one-to-one, so I thought I would try it out! Fast forward a year or so, and now it’s my sole assessment tool for my math classes!
Describe your favorite Edulastic “aha” moment.
I’d say my “aha” moment was when a student pulled up their assessment report and started discussing ways that he could improve the types of problems that he had missed. The instant and visual feedback is amazing for students.
What are your teaching/learning goals this year?
My goals this year are to continue building my student-centered one-to-one classroom. I am working to find ways to put students in the driver seats and take charge of their learning, while still holding them accountable and supporting their progress.
Sum up your teaching philosophy in a few sentences!
I am all about student ownership! I am not a stand in the front and talk at the class kind of teacher. I design learning opportunities and support students in their progression to meeting the goals that I’ve set. I want students to develop skills, not just memorize facts and figures. The best way to sum up my philosophy is that it’s all about having a growth mindset!
Favorite motivational idea:
“Be the change you want to see in the world.” I love it so much, I put it on my custom planner cover.
Tips for new Edulastic users:
My best advice with ANY technology is to start small. You have to just go for it and give it a go. Use your results and find a way to make Edulastic work with your classroom structure and routines.
Favorite Edulastic question type?
I enjoy the category sorting questions. It makes students think in a different way rather than just calculating answers.
Favorite snack while using Edulastic
My favorite snack is air-popped popcorn and caramel rice cakes.
Spring or Fall?
Best tactic for getting the class quiet?
Class-Yes and/or Starting to Talk in a Silly Accent
Must- have classroom Decor:
Anything Bright, Colorful, and HAPPY
Favorite time of the school year and why:
I love when I can see my students starting to “buy-in” to my style and routines. This is usually sometime in second quarter. We know and trust each other and real learning starts happening!
Kindest compliment you have received from a student or teacher?
You helped me realize that I CAN do anything. Thank you for having high expectations!
Funniest student moment?
A wiggly student “fell” out of his chair while his legs were wrapped around the legs. Thus, he was hanging like a monkey. (don’t worry- he didn’t get hurt at all)
Greatest accomplishment in the classroom this past year:
I helped to raise grade level math PARCC scores by about 30%!
How do you like to spend your free time?
I love to be at home playing with my 5 year old and going on “adventures” as she so sweetly says!
What is the hardest part of being a teacher?
The hardest part of being a teacher is that fact that there’s never a finish line. I have a very difficult time turning off the teacher brain. It’s one of my greatest blessings, but also one of my biggest struggles as well.