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Teacher of the Day

Name:  Dianna Lindsay

School:  Williamsburg Christian Academy

Subject:  Honors Constitutional Law, Honors Government, Honors World Literature and Honors Journalism

State:  Virginia

What or who inspired you to become a teacher?

High school was a watershed opportunity for me. Moving from an all-girls junior/senior school in Boston to a co-educational suburban high school on Boston's South Shore was remarkable for me. The teachers were engaging but one was amazing--my high school history teacher; she traveled the world, had a great sense of humor and seemed to really like kids! Now, that was the class I looked forward to each day!

How are things different for you now, compared to when you first started teaching?

dr dianna lindsay Today's educational environment is a potpourri of standards and technology. The standards-based movement on one hand has de-personalized relationships between teachers and students but increased the achievements of the traditional under-performers. This makes it difficult to refute! I am waiting for the balance to be fully realized, however.

The technology, on the other hand, has launched us into amazing star power! Being connected to my students in non-traditional ways helps me model continuously discovering, learning and sharing. At 10:00 p.m. when I find a Web site of interest, I can Tweet my students and guide them to leadership conversations when they enter class the next day. I can also keep the conversation alive after the class is "over." How amazing is it to know you can always chat about an interest with a young mind eager to learn?

What advice would you give to a new or struggling teacher?

"Be kind to yourself" is my first nugget to new teachers. My second is to visit my blog on, where I am spending time trying to cultivate (1) the use of time, (2) the meaning of talent, (3) the possibilities of treasures in every learner, (4) the power of technology and (5) the terrain we call school. Join the conversation!

My best day in the classroom was when…

my students are laughing, talking, discussing, blogging, tweeting and questioning each other in Socratic format! Can it ever get any better than that in a high school classroom? I completely enjoy watch them grow, learn, challenge and discover ways to push themselves and each other!

The best compliment I ever received was...

when any student says "thank you" as s/he walks out of class and adds: "What a great conversation we had in our class today!" Awesome!

What's your favorite part of the school year?

I fully enjoy establishing the community of learners at the start of school. Helping students set their learning needs, providing them the voice and skills to tell me what they expect of me as their teacher, and then watching the classroom ship set sail, leaving the safe harbor of complacency, is awesome for me!

What is your one must-have item for the classroom?

Wireless Internet

What do you eat for breakfast on school days?

I am a protein-shake drinker every morning. It keeps me focused, energized and full all morning!

What movie or TV show do you secretly love?

Law & Order (the entire series)


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