Congratulations to Sharon Miller, the winner of the EXEMPLARY TEACHER AWARD for 2003. Sharon established our Teacher Research and Inquiry Institute, now in its 5th year. She has led teachers in presentations at the local, state, and national level. She recently wrote and won a $3000 TIC (Teacher Inquiry Community) grant to support teacher leaders in teacher research in local schools. And she had led a Professional Learning Community (PLC) in a writing endeavor that has resulted in a book contract.
Teachers write about Sharon:
"Sharon is a wonderful motivating force. She is very supportive, but all the while she challenges you and pushes you to deepen your work. There are times when teacher research becomes very hard, especially when you're trying to balance doing your research with the difficult demands of just being a teacher. Sharon won't let you give up, even when the going gets tough, and that's a good thing."
"We are so lucky that Sharon decided to 'retire' to Tucson. She has brought with her a wealth of experience in the classroom and with teacher research, along with a generous spirit of sharing and commitment. She has dedicated countless hours to help in get the teacher research program off the ground. She might not have her own classroom with kids anymore, but in her role as director of the Teacher Research Institute, she has developed a wonderful classroom for adults."
"Sharon 'walks the talk' when it comes to life-long learning. She believes deeply in the importance of relevant, meaningful learning experiences for all children and for all teachers. She seeks out this kind of learning for herself, serving as model for the adults with whom she works. She is open to new ideas, reflective about herself as a learner and facilitator, willing to take risks, and eager to share her new discoveries and the evolution of her own understanding with others."