Updated: May 04, 2021 05:22 PM
Created: May 04, 2021 04:47 PM
(ABC 6 News) - Every year we honor teachers during Teacher Appreciation Day. But this year we are honoring them a little more because of the year they have been through with the pandemic.
Teachers have had quite the year of teaching through a pandemic.
Jessica Meeker has been teaching for 13 years. She decided she wanted to be a teacher in first grade.
"My first-grade teacher was the most excellent teacher I have ever had. Even at the age of six, I could tell that she was one of the best so I always aspired to be her," Meeker, a preschool teacher at Kasson Mantorville Public Schools said.
Meeker had to adapt to changes, like distance learning with preschoolers.
"It's definitely been one of the most challenging years of education. But the nice part of a challenge is it always helps you grow," Meeker said.
But the rewards outweigh the challenges.
"When I'm with my little ones light bulb moments happen every day and it's just so rewarding to be able to see the hard work that we do put in in early childhood to be rewarded with those kids' lightbulb moments," Meeker said.
It is Monica Scheevel's fifth year teaching fifth grade.
"I loved school growing up and I had amazing teachers growing up that inspired me to want to give back to the youth," Scheevel, a fifth-grade teacher at Ben Franklin Elementary School in Rochester said. "It's been a learning curve of a year, but we're just trying to the best we can for students. You are very powerful for them and it's inspiring to be so influential in their lives at that age."
This year has been different, but the impact she's had on her students this year is no different than years past.
"We have such a powerful impact on their lives... The best thing is when a student is like 'I can't do this, I can't do this,' and then one day they're like 'I get this!' so those big Aha's," Scheevel said.
Teachers are teaching and inspiring the next generation, both virtually and in the classroom.
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