2006 Presidential Award for Excellence in Math and Science Teaching
Each year the President of the U.S. recognizes outstanding K-12 science
and math teachers throughout the country. One math and one science
educator is chosen from each state who exemplifies deep content
knowledge combined with the ability to motivate students in science and
The insect unit is a favorite activity of Cheryl Collazo’s students. “Students select, catch, and study an insect that they keep in the classroom and, at the end of the unit, they are required to write an ‘Auto-Bug-Ography,’ which always proves to be very imaginative and a big hit with the students,” said Collazo. Although each of her students have unique capabilities and circumstances, she believes that all students can learn, given the time and resources. Cooperative teams help the learning process, she said.
Every child can achieve given the opportunity, and my classroom is an emotionally safe, highly charged learning environment. Live animals, guest speakers, field trips, interactive software, courtroom dramas, observation stations, science fairs, research, and eco-mystery novels are all resources and strategies that I use to create an interesting, learner-motivated classroom. I feel very strongly that high-interest science is the vehicle in which all students can enjoy academic growth.