Patricia Burns' first grade class can be heard singing a song called "The Cradle of Civilization". And this song makes it hard to forget that the cradle of civilization was Mesopotamia.
Burns uses songs, maps and other fun things to make sure her first graders at Heard Elementary learn lessons and remember them.
"I'm a hands on learner myself, and to me, hands on is just the way to do it," said Burns. "And for children to be able to actually make these maps and talk about it, and to put the glue on and then sand these maps, they'll remember this so much more than they will if we just colored a map and went on."
And she should know. She's been teaching young students now for almost 33 years.
"I was a junior in college when I began working with a summer program," said Burns. "I went to summer school that year and during the summer program, I worked with a kindergarten group, mostly leisure time activities, but I just fell in love with that. They're just special. They're wonderful. These children just have energy that I love."
Now, this is the last year Mrs. Burns will enjoy all of this energy. She plans to retire after this school year, so she wants to take this year out with a bang. "I'm going make this year really big," said Burns.
So for making all of her years in the classroom "big", loaded with lots of learning and fun, Patricia Burns is this week's WTOC Top Teacher.