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Alexandria Teacher Named National History Teacher of the Year | News

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Alexandria Teacher Named National History Teacher of the Year
News, People, Schools

From Alexandria City Public Schools:

Stacy Hoeflich, fourth-grade Virginia Studies teacher at John Adams Elementary School was named the 2011 National History Teacher of the Year today in Harlem, N.Y.  The award was announced this afternoon at the Frederick Douglass Academy during a ceremony which included Alexandria City Public Schools (ACPS) Superintendent Morton Sherman, New York City’s Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, ACPS students, and the teacher nominees representing each state for this esteemed honor.  Hoeflich received a $10,000 award along with this prestigious title.  The award is co-sponsored by the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History, HISTORY® and Preserve America.
 “I am thrilled to see Stacy receive this well-deserved accolade, a tribute to her skill at making history come alive for her students,” Dr. Sherman said. “Her unique vision enables her students to understand and appreciate how our country’s rich legacy has shaped their lives and she represents what teaching and learning is all about; engaging all students to become life-long learners.” Hoeflich was chosen as the 2011 National History Teacher of the Year from a pool of winners from each of the fifty states, the District of Columbia, US Territories, and Department of Defense schools. The National History Teacher of the Year Award recognizes the country’s most outstanding history teachers
in elementary, middle, and high school classrooms. Each year, the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History administers the award by seeking exemplary history educators who demonstrate commitment to teaching American history in the classroom through effective use of documents, artifacts, historic sites, oral histories, and other primary resources to engage students.  Each state honoree receives $1,000 and an archive of books and resources from Gilder Lehrman and HISTORY®—co-sponsor of the award— for his or her school’s library. In June, Hoeflich was named 2011 Virginia History Teacher of the Year. Last month, she learned that she was one of five finalists for the national honor and invited to New York for the announcement. As 2011 Virginia History Teacher of the Year, she received a certificate of recognition, a $1,000 honorarium and the opportunity to participate in a Gilder Lehrman Institute summer seminar. In addition, the John Adams library received a collection of history books and reference materials in Hoeflich’s honor.

"Hoeflich is devoted to the teaching and learning of history,” said Ms. Hoeflich’s nominator, Dr. Kelly Schrum, director of educational projects at the Center of History and New Media at George Mason University. “After seeing the students in her classroom excitedly puzzle over a difficult map created 400 years ago or political cartoons from the last century, I am confident that students leave her classroom with a lifelong interest in understanding the complexities of the past.”  

A fourth-grade teacher for 13 years, Hoeflich is known for helping design lessons to benefit the culturally and ethnically diverse student population - representing families from more than 50 countries - at her school. Through a National Endowment for the Humanities Summer Institute, Hoeflich studied in Austria and later incorporated what she learned in the classroom. She, along with John Adams Vocal Music Teacher Wes McCune and students, wrote, produced and performed three original and historically accurate operas on George Mason, Thomas Jefferson and Virginia’s Native Americans.  Previous honors for Hoeflich include Mount Vernon Teacher of the Year and the Technology Integration Educator Award. In addition to Hoeflich’s work in her own classroom, she serves as an Educational Consultant to the Center for History and New Media at George Mason University, creating and modeling lesson plans and creating and reviewing content for the National History Education Clearinghouse.  She has also been an active member and presenter at the national conferences of the Organization of American Historians, the American Historical Association, and the National Council for the Social Studies. 

“This is indeed an honor for Stacy Hoeflich and for Virginia,” said the Commonwealth’s Superintendent of Public Instruction Patricia I. Wright. “Her students dive into Virginia history and geography through experiential learning and hands-on classroom activities. Her creative approach to history instruction engages students throughout the year and instills in them an appreciation of how the present is connected to the past.”


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