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Matt Farina

Teacher, Mount Pleasant Elementary School

“Education is not about just teaching lessons in academics, but it is also about developing relationships, providing guidance, and teaching students how to succeed in the classroom so that it will translate to their everyday lives.”

Education has not only played a role in my life, but has truly become a deep rooted belief and tradition in my family. It all started with my grandmother who laid the foundation for our beliefs in education. A teacher, she raised three children whose careers have been in education. Education is my passion. Students are my passion. Being a role model, being an inspiration, and having an impact on the lives of my students are what I live for.

A true teacher portrays the passion for going above and beyond to reach and teach their students. I see education as a means to embrace students, no matter where they are or where they come from, so that we can prepare and deliver ideas that will impact them on a daily basis and for years to come. I see education as a means to inspire students to be the best they can possibly be in every aspect of their lives and as a means to challenge students to make the most of their opportunities, to set goals, and to strive to achieve their goals through persistence and determination. Education is about giving students what they need to be successful in the world. As a teacher, it is up to me to convey to them how to live life passionately in order to impact not only their lives, but our world. We have the power to provide stability at our school, and we take pride in providing the safest, warm, educational, learning environment for our students.

I take pride in introducing ideas and opportunities to my students that are purposeful, innovative, creative, and fun. Last year, I created and coordinated an Elementary Fitness Festival for my school district (Brandywine). What started as a small idea that I came up with, grew into an amazing event: a day of free fitness fun for everyone with over 450 participants. I was able to recruit over 35 programs to take part in our festival: Zumba, yoga, tennis, golf, soccer, running, rugby, adaptive programs, professional athletes, and organizations. Once the festival began to grow, I considered the impact that could be felt by more than just my students and approached my superintendent to get the permission to reach our entire district. Eight elementary schools and students from local communities attended. News spread throughout our county, and we ended up forging a great partnership with the local YMCA.

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