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Saturday, Apr. 30, 2016

Pierce City High School teacher is passionate about her work

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Crystal Charles, Pierce City High School social studies instructor, third from left, was surrounded by her Western Civilization class when the announcement was made that she was chosen as October Teacher of the Month. Charles was nominated by Jackie Nelson, far left, high school counselor. [Times Photo by Melonie Roberts]
In four years of teaching at Pierce City High School, Crystal Charles has become a favorite of her students and fellow teachers. "Exceptional" is just one of the many adjectives her co-workers use to describe her commitment to the teaching profession, and it is Charles' passion for teaching that helped her earn October Teacher of the Month honors.

Charles received the award during her seventh hour Western Civilization class. The Teacher of the Month program is sponsored by EFCO, a Pella Corporation, in partnership with The Monett Times. "I am flattered," said Charles after receiving the award. "I look up to so many teachers, and I can think of many who deserve this award more than I do. I am very proud to have received this honor."

In addition to Western Civilization, which is a dual credit college course, Charles teaches American government, international relations, anthropology and contemporary issues. She also serves as advisor of Pierce City's National Honor Society chapter and as a member of the PLC (Professional Learning Communities) Leadership Team.

Charles holds a bachelor of arts degree in history and political science from Pittsburg State University and will graduate this winter with a master of arts in teaching from Missouri State University. She is in her fourth year of teaching, and all four years have been spent at Pierce City High School.

Charles' love of history and government inspired her to pursue a career in education.

"Sharing that love with students was just the next step," said Charles. "I cannot imagine doing anything else.

"I enjoy the students," Charles continued. "I know all teachers say that, but it's true. I don't think you could be a good teacher and not love kids. Plus, I love a challenge. Getting kids to understand the complexities of American government in 50 minutes a day . . . fear not, I will succeed."

When Charles is not busy preparing her curriculum or fixing up her classroom, she is probably reading. Ken Follett is one of her favorite authors. Charles also enjoys traveling and says Paris is her favorite city.

"And I have a Harley," adds Charles. "I enjoy that too."

Charles and her husband, Jeff, have five kids: Zachary, 19, Alex, 17, Courtney, 15, Christopher, 14, and Joeli, 11.

In recognition of her Teacher of the Month award, Charles received a plaque and a check for $250 from EFCO to be used in her classroom.

Any public or private school teacher in Monett, Purdy, Verona, Pierce City or Freistatt is eligible for the award. Nominations can be made by students, parents or fellow educators. Nomination letters can be e-mailed to editor@monett-times.com or dropped off at area school offices.

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