Crowley ISD Connections Magazine Summer 2017 - Page 21

Secondary Teacher of the Year Holly Varley, Crowley High School What is your favorite part about being a teacher? Varley: “My job changes every single day. No day is like another day. Even if you are teaching the same material, there will be different students. Every class has its own personality. I get to interact with hundreds of students every single day. Some of them have good days, some of them have bad days. But I get to have those meaningful interactions with my students, such as saying hello, going to baseball games or dance recitals and other things, which shows them we are supporters of the things that they do.” What do you like about teaching at Crowley High? Varley: “There are amazing, magical, life-changing things that happen at Crowley High School every single day. CHS has won the Secondary Teacher of the Year three years in a row, and I think that’s just an indicator of how much the teachers on our campus care about the students that come through our doors.” How do you make your classes engaging? Varley: “I enjoy being able to do hands-on activities in my class. I have always been passionate about the fact that students learn more when they do, more than when they just sit. Sitting and listening is great, but when you can get them engaged with one another, talking about the content you’re trying to get them to understand, is when the real interactions and connections are made.” Why do you enjoy teaching high school students? Varley: “Teenagers are so moldable at this point and I feel like this is the age where I can have the biggest influence. There are so many decisions that have to be made in these high school years and I really feel like they need a driving force to help with those decisions and be a positive influence in their lives.” What do you teach at Crowley High? Varley: “I teach advanced placement and regular government, as well as a student leadership class. I’m also the student council sponsor on our campus. I love teaching government, it’s a passion of mine. I feel that in order to be responsible citizens, you need to play an active role in your government, and I really believe it’s important to teach my students to have a sense of civic duty and that it’s their responsibility.” “I was involved in student council when I was in high school and it’s great to build a sense of community and school spirit within your campus through arranging events like the homecoming parade and spirit weeks. Those things have a big impact, because those are the things that you always remember. You may not remember solving a problem in math class, but you’re going to remember what you and your friends did at the homecoming dance. I want to be able to give our students that high school experience that they can look back on with fond memories.” CROWLEY ISD CONNECTIONS | Summer 2017 21