Top Teacher: St. Albert the Great understands parents’ concerns

Name: Kimberly Embry

School District: St. Albert the Great in Kettering (Archdiocese of Cincinnati)

Grade you teach: 5th

What is your favorite subject? I teach Reading, Language Arts, and Science and I love all three, but I am more partial to reading. I like to take a book and make it a fun experience in the classroom. Whether it’s a relay race in sequencing a story or creating a “dig site” where they must refer back to a book for the answer on where to “dig” for a special prize. Books can be an adventure and I love to share that with students.

What/Who inspired you to become a teacher? I didn’t start out as a teacher. My first degree was in Anthropology. I had dreams of becoming a forensic scientist, but I always loved working with children. I started working with children through church and then through my daughter’s Girl Scout Troop. My co-leader, Suzzi Luken (Sinclair Professor) was a big inspiration in my decision to go back to school and become a teacher. She encouraged me to do what I love and so I made the decision of going back to school. It turned out to be the right one for me.

What do you enjoy most about teaching? I love watching students in that “aha” moment. Where they finally understand something that they have struggled with for so long and you can see the exact moment it clicks. In addition, I love to take a subject or a topic that students find boring and reworking it in a way to engage them in learning. Even the most difficult or boring topics can be presented in a way that students will find interesting.