The classroom of Courtney Karr at West Morgan Middle School is filled with a whole lot of enthusiasm and comfy chairs. This makes for a really positive learning environment where kids can learn to love math.
“I teach a subject that a lot of people don’t love, and I want them to love it,” explains Courtney Karr, the Valley’s Top Teacher. “So I want them to be comfortable and I want them to feel at a home. I want them to not be afraid to take chances and risks. I have just found if they can kind of relax a little bit, it takes some of the pressure off.”
All of Mrs. Karr’s students say she has good spirits and they can tell she truly loves her job.
“She uses her hands and you can see it in her voice,”says Melvin Carrillo, a 6th grade student. “You can see when a teacher likes their job and when they don’t.”
“She talks about it and she always says ‘oh,I love my job, I am so glad I picked this.’ She likes it a lot,” says Gunner Karr, who is the son of Mrs. Karr and also one of her students.
Kids admire Mrs. Karr and so do other teachers.
“Some of her older students that I talk to say that she is the teacher that they learned some of the most from and enjoyed the most,” says Cayce Willis, a 5th grade teacher. “If you can have a balance between those two, I think it is something rare and it is something special.”
Her kids say she is a big hand talker and everyone down the school hallway knows she can get pretty loud.
“You can hear her energy and her passion a mile away,” says Cayce Willis. “She breaks out a microphone for a little song and dance every now and then.”
“Mrs. Willis heard my crazy siren noises I was making in class, I had no idea it had traveled that far,” laughs Mrs. Karr. “But when you ask the kids why was she acting like a siren, they all remember that math skill.”
All the loud noises, classroom decorations, and one on one teaching time helps her kids learn math, but that’s not her only goal.
Mrs. Karr just wants her kids to know she cares about them. Whether it be they don’t understand a math problem or they don”t have clothes to wear to school the next day, she is always there.
“When you spend this much time with kids, they are yours, I mean they are my kids,” explains Courtney Karr. “I cry when they cry and I am happy when they’re happy, there is an emotional attachment there. I truly love my job, I love these kids, and I am just so blessed to have the opportunity to do this everyday.”
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