Teacher You Can Count On - Deborah Henely - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

1/27/05

Teacher You Can Count On - Deborah Henely

Deborah Henely quickly flips through a pile of books.

"This ones called the Silver Crown," says Henely a sixth grade teacher at Stewart Elementary. "And this ones called Jeridan's Drama Life."

If the titles of these books sound unfamiliar, there's a reason why. You see these books can't be found at your local bookstore, but they are available in Henely's classroom.

"One of the things that the state really wants us to do is help children find their voice and if they can engage in a writing activity that they have lots of support and have interest in writing then they make huge breakthroughs," says Henely.

Henely encouraged each student to write and illustrate their very own novel, which she keeps on display during the school year. But it's what they learned in the process that made this writing project successful.

"We learned how the author has to make up stuff to write and that he has to think how to draw pictures for it," says Kelsey Coons, a sixth grader at Stewart Elementary.

Thinking creatively wasn't the only purpose of students putting pen to paper.

"The entire process I emphasize vocabulary and having all the aspects that you need in a good story from a great beginning, a satisfying problem and then a conclusion," says Henely.

It's Henely's ability to create a project that will last a lifetime and the belief in her students writing abilities that makes her a teacher you can count on.

"She's a good teacher and she helps us understand things better," says Jajuan Austin, a sixth grader at Stewart Elementary.

If there's a teacher you would like to nominate, send an e-mail to teacher@kcbd.com.

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