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Teacher of the Week: Nov. 2021

Each week, we're recognizing an awesome educator in West Michigan.
Credit: wzzm

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — Teacher of the Week is back!

If there's a teacher in your life who you think deserves some recognition, here's your chance!

13 ON YOUR SIDE Mornings is launching Teacher of the Week. 

Here's how it works:

Send in your nominations to our email at news@13onyourside.com or text us at 616-559-1310. Make sure to include a short explanation of why the educator deserved to be recognized, as well as a photo.

Then every Monday, a winner will be announced.

OFFICIAL RULES: Nominating Teachers of the Week

Teacher of the Week Winners

On Nov. 1, the winner of Teacher of the Week was Coreene Nunn at Griffin Elementary School. Nunn is an early childhood teacher, working with students under the age of five. She offers support to a diverse group, including three students who speak a different language each. Nunn said she wants to be the teacher that ignites students' passion for learning from the very beginning.

On Nov. 8, the winner of Teacher of the Week was Andrew Sargent from Lowell Area Schools. Sargent teaches at Alto Elementary School and is described as "a champion for his students." He is known for doing special handshakes with each student and for giving them each a unique nickname. Sargent says his job is about letting students know there's more to school than just learning.

On Nov. 15, the winner of Teacher of the Week was Melisa Overway with Reeths-Puffer Intermediate School. Overway is described as a teacher who believes in helping her students grow, not only as professionals but also as good human beings. A few years ago, she started a new tradition: honoring two students every Friday with a pineapple for demonstrating some of the same traits you might use to describe the fruit. "It's just an awesome way to creatively call out someone who's standing tall, believing in who they are, being sweet on the inside," Overway said. 

On Nov. 22, the winner of Teacher of the Week was Mona Shores Middle School PE teacher Carley Van Swol. She has only been teaching for three years, a large part of which has been during the pandemic. But Van Swol is looking at the bright side, creating a fun atmosphere for students of all physical abilities. She was nominated for her creativity and support for her students. 

On Nov. 29, the winner of Teacher of the Week was Alexa Fitzpatrick with Kenowa Hills Public Schools. Fitzpatrick is a kindergarten teacher who says she always knew she wanted to teach. Fitzpatrick was nominated for her positivity. She says it's important to focus on what matters during challenging times. 

RELATED: Teacher of the Week: Oct. 2021

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