MCLEANSBORO — This week’s Orthopaedic Center of Southern Illinois MVT–Most Valuable Teacher Award–goes to Ms. Bonnie Webb, a kindergarten teacher at Hamilton County’s East Side Elementary.
Webb has 18 in-class students and shares the online portion of the blended schedule with the other kindergarten teachers every afternoon. She admits it has been quite challenge to teach during a pandemic, adding it has taken a team effort to do it well.
“The administration, my teacher partners, the cooks, the custodians, the tutors–it takes a village to get these kids where they need to be,” Webb said. “And I have to say I think our school tops the list on working together.”
Ms. Bonnie, as the kids call her, has taught kindergarten for more than two decades. This is her 35th year of teaching overall, and it will be her last, as she will retire at the end of the school year.
“It has been a joy,” Webb said. “I decided coming into this year that I was going out with a bang, and we were gonna have fun. I love all of my kids, but one of my greatest joys is I have my granddaughter this year in my class, so that’s nice. I’ve had all of my children and grandchildren over my 35 years except one.”
As you might expect, Ms. Bonnie’s former student list is quite extensive. She even has several second generation students.
“I’ve had kids of kids, students of past students, so that’s been really fun,” Webb said. “They’re always tickled, so that makes me feel good. I must’ve done something right that many years ago.”
“When the big kids come in, or if I go to the high school, I get big hugs,” Webb said but quickly added “not this year of course. Big hugs and ‘Ms. Bonnie, How are you? I miss your class.'”
In her nomination, Magen Miller had this to say about Webb: “She is the most loving teacher we could have asked for our little girl! Mrs. Bonnie taught my husband and sister-in-law and now is getting to have our little girl in her final year of teaching! She is the definition of the perfect kindergarten teacher: she is fun and entertaining and energetic! She is full of love for all of her students and goes above and beyond for them everyday! She loves her students like they are her own!”
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