Great teachers can remain in the minds and hearts of their students for the rest of their lives.
Canadian Family, self-described as “one of Canada’s leading online parenting destinations,” is sponsoring their sixth annual Great Teacher Awards. Teachers across Canada are nominated for their unique and effective teaching methods, and the list is then narrowed down to twelve finalists. This year there were so many compelling nominations that thirteen finalists were chosen – and one of those is Hamilton’s own Lindsay Boyle.

Canada’s Next Great Teacher in action.

The purpose of this contest is, according to Canadian Family, to “[celebrate] the teachers who make such a difference in our children’s minds and lives.” Lindsay, who teaches Grade 5 at Sir Wilfred Laurier School, is one such teacher.

Lindsay’s first teaching experience was in university when she worked for the City of St. Catharines, training Recreation Leaders. “I truly enjoyed teaching them the program and was always fascinated and excited to see when the ‘light bulb’ went off and they understood the material.”

A transition into teaching was natural. “Making a difference for children and shaping them into our future leaders [is] my number one goal and teaching is the perfect outlet for that,” she says.

Lindsay takes her mission above and beyond her classroom duties by supplementing the curriculum and engaging her students with hands-on learning experiences, field trips and guest speakers. She also runs a once-a-week reading club for girls and encourages them to have in-depth discussions. “I don’t teach or plan within the parameters of a job description,” she explains. “I create [student] learning experiences in the most creative ways that I can and when I see an opportunity for more I take it!”

A colleague describes Lindsay as “one of the hardest working teachers I’ve ever met. She creates a safe environment for the students in her classroom to work in by promoting character development.”

“I’m motivated to do what is best for my students,” Lindsay admits. “I strive to give them interesting and authentic learning opportunities where they will be able to take something from the lesson and remember it in the future. “I love my job and I would do anything to help nurture students’ interests, help them to learn and most of all, grow into global citizens.”

You can vote for Lindsay Boyle from now and up until June 30th by going to www.canadianfamily.ca/teacher-awards-voting-page. There will be three winners chosen to be honoured in Canadian Family’s September 2012 issue. They will also receive $2,500 to go towards “programming and supplies at their school.”

I am Hamilton-born and raised, and proud of it. I have had a passion for writing since I was a small child, when my father and I would rewrite Stephen King novels as bedtime stories. I spent my awkward adolescence writing fan fiction about Conan O'Brien; I have since graduated on to writing stand up comedy, still about Conan O'Brien. In the fall, I will be going to McMaster University for Communication Studies, where I plan on applying my hopefully entertaining voice to every imaginable medium.

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