Valleys First Responder

Stacy Owens Wins The Valley's Top Teacher

Students say their middle school music teacher deserves an A+

DECATUR, Ala. - Plato once said, "music gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination, and life to everything."

That's exactly what Stacy Owens teaches at Oak Park Middle School in Decatur.

She says music is a vital component to academic success, and she strives to make it fun and enjoyable for her middle school students.

Music fills her classroom where students can work together and make mistakes.

"(I tell my students) don't be afraid to fail," said Mrs. Owens. "Don't be afraid to make that mistake because someone's going to have your back and pick you up."

Students say that teaching style makes all the difference.

"Whenever you're singing in chorus, you need to be comfortable with what you're doing, or else you can mess up and feel like you let yourself and your team down," said Abby McCormick, a student in Mrs. Owens' classroom. "But with Mrs. Owens, she'll build you up, and make you feel comfortable. The environment is just happy."

Mrs. Owens says mistakes allow us to learn.

"If you don't understand it, I'll do it again and teach you another way so you can understand it," said Mrs. Owens. "Just not giving up on them - that's what I hope they remember."

Students tell me their teacher makes them feel confident and comfortable at any musical level.

"I have trouble understanding stuff, but she breaks it down a little more than most teachers do," said middle school student, Lyla Wyatt. "She's really nice. She helps you really well."

"Her personality is very happy-go-lucky," said student, Auburin Lancaster. "She's very optimistic about things. It helps us because it motivates us to be more positive about the class. She makes us happy to be there."

Mrs. Owens says all music is beautiful, as long as it comes from the heart.

"It doesn't matter if you feel like you can sing or not," said Mrs. Owens. "My job is to teach you how to sing better. It doesn't matter if you're awesome or if you sing in the shower. If you like to sing, then come to my classroom."

To nominate a teacher you admire, click here.

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