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Educator of the Year

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Class starts at 7:20am—this is way too early to function. I walk into the classroom, drop my backpack off, and then slowly drag my feet in the gloomy hallways towards the theater. I creak open the door and I am greeted by a circle of bright smiling students. I hop into the circle and join in on the game of Whiz. Laughter starts to echo off the theater walls. But there is one cackle that can be heard above all. Mrs. Markano: a petite lady with a booming laugh.

I was first introduced to Mrs. Markano Junior year. She was my English 11 teacher. But she was different from any other teacher I’d ever encountered. Maybe it was her theatrical style of teaching that caught my eye first, or her energetic personality that lit up any room, but all that mattered was that she had a way with students. Mrs. Markano made every student want to learn and participate.

She never judged anyone. Not once. In her class, never did I feel my opinion was being analyzed or judged by her personal viewpoints. She was open to anything and her encouragement of individuality was refreshing.

I developed a relationship with her. She became the only teacher I could vent to, share my ideas and opinions with, or just eat lunch around. I never felt this comfortable around a teacher in all my years of schooling. Mrs. Markano was the only teacher I cried to about my feelings. But what surprised me most was that I was comforted back by a friend.

I wasn’t ready to leave her junior year, so fortunately she is more than just an English teacher. She commits most of her time to acting, and participating in stage crew for our school’s Broadway Productions. So, the only way to make her my teacher again was to join Acting.

Acting class is different from any other elective I have ever taken at Arrowhead. Never are we sitting in desks. Instead, Mrs. Markano has each and every student jumping and running around. Mrs. Markano encourages students to be the most obnoxious, the most outrageous, or the most dramatic. She lets you step out of your box and become anybody you want to be.

Mrs. Markano is one-of-a-kind. She helped develop me as a person, and as a teacher she’s done her job. She has become more than a teacher to me—now, I’m happy to call Mrs. Markano a friend.





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