VUES educator named Vermont Teacher of the Year
, 2022-09-29 13:45:40,
VERGENNES — The Vermont Agency of Education on Thursday named Vergennes Union Elementary School physical education teacher Robyn Newton as the 2023 Vermont Teacher of the Year. Her tenure as Teacher of the Year will begin Jan. 1.
Another Addison County teacher, Amy Clapp at Salisbury Community School, was tapped as one of four Distinguished Finalists for the honor. The other finalists are Abbie Bowker, visual art teacher at Champlain Valley Union High School, and Aziza Malik, upper elementary teacher at Champlain Elementary School.
Robyn Newton, a PE teacher at VUES for 27 years, focuses on providing a physical education experience that is joyful and educational, and develops the skills and confidence needed for healthy development and lifelong fitness, the Agency of Education said in a press release. She has built an interdisciplinary program that connects students to their communities and builds on their learning in the classroom, on the playing field and beyond.
“Robyn Newton exemplifies what makes Vermont educators special,” said Secretary of Education Dan French. “From using the Olympics to teach students about sportsmanship, competition, world affairs and intercultural competency, to her efforts to bring more funding to physical education and nutrition programs in her district, Ms. Newton excels in teaching, shows leadership through an interdisciplinary and collaborative mindset, and, most importantly, she builds excitement for learning in and out of the classroom.”
Newton’s accomplishments at VUES include leading a multi-disciplinary unit on the Olympics that touches every grade and every subject at the school. Each class chooses a country to represent, and students learn about their country through lessons in reading, writing and math. Before the games, students see videos of real Olympic events, and in PE they learn and practice the related skills. Each student chooses four events in which to compete.
“There is nothing better than watching peers cheer each other on or hearing a younger student shout ‘I won’ when they receive their bronze medal,” Newton wrote in her application for Vermont Teacher of the Year. “This unit embodies how and why I teach: to create enjoyable experiences that develop new…
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