We are excited to announce the three deserving winners of this year's Treat Your Teacher contest. Our staff had the privilege to read about so many inspiring teachers and the choice of just three was not easy.
Congratulations and thanks to these amazing educators! Read on to hear about their impact.
Sheri Cornett "I've never encountered a teacher who cares so deeply for her students. She's as passionate as she is intelligent. She has taught my own child and her knowledge and wisdom run deep. And what is even more incredible is she does all this while battling severe health issues." - Angel O.
"Sheri, despite a severe chronic pain disorder, shows up and teaches reading to kids with deep need (behavioral, emotional, mental). Recently our town has hosted many refugee families and she has found ways to teach English to girls who don’t even know how to read their own language. She is what a teacher should be—caring for her students as people with dignity, respect, and love, while breaking records on advancing reading levels." - Dalenna
"My friend Sheri is amazing! She works tirelessly to make sure her students have all the best. She has lots of health problems and yet she gives her students everything she can. She gives them books each year and throws them a party each year on Bilbo Baggins' birthday and she is like a real-life Mrs. Frizzle. She is also an incredible wife, mother, and friend. She is an incredibly generous and loving woman and has a heart of gold." - Julia T.
Gabriella Frongillo "Gabriella has dedicated her entire life to the pursuit of educating children. Since she was in pre-K, Gabriella knew that she wanted to be a teacher. Elementary homework, middle school exams, high school projects, college applications— everything! All done with the hopes of one day changing her students’ lives through her commitment to effective and inspiring pedagogy. Many teachers enjoy teaching because they get to work with children, they get to creatively decorate their classrooms, and they enjoy reliving days of old through the young faces occupying the very seats they once did. Not Gabriella. Although she appreciates those benefits, the thing that has always been of upmost importance to her is the impact she has on these children. Just yesterday, she recounted how one of her students with autism struggled severely with food aversions. Despite previous attempts by others to encourage this student to eat anything other than saltine crackers (genuinely the only thing he cared to eat), to no avail the student continued to struggle with the thought of touching anything provided by the school. Gabriella told me how heartbroken this made her and how committed she was to trying to help this child. In detail, she outlined her elaborate plan to convince this student to try a pop tart. Today, with a smile filled with victory, she told me how the student didn’t ultimately eat the pop tart but he did in fact agree to touching and smelling it. To me, such an occasion seemed mundane but in her eyes I saw how much it meant to her. How much a malnourished child having the courage and trust to even smell a new food, something he wouldn’t dare try with anyone else before, meant everything to her. This is the kind of care Ms. Frongillo has for her students. Beyond this student, children of divorce, children facing racial discrimination, children 3 grade levels behind in math and reading, and students that are usually enthusiastic but noticeably upset enough for her to know they didn’t have a good night the day prior—these are the students that Ms. Frongillo champions. The students that keep her up at night. The students that bring tears to her eyes and smiles to her cheek. They mean everything to her despite how difficult teaching has been these past two years for her. Despite the struggle, she always persists because she knows her work is beyond herself. Her work is not about enjoyment, it’s about duty and it’s about service. Ms. Frongillo inspires me every single day with her perseverance and dedication to nurturing the minds of our country’s next generation. From having to financial assist her parents while in high school, to moving more than 5 times within the same city due to layoffs, and to recently having lost her family dog who was her best companion growing up through a lonely childhood, Ms. Frongillo is no stranger to adversity. But nonetheless, she carries on. She absolutely loves reading, I am convinced her heart is shaped like a book. As a big fan of your brand, I know that winning this giveaway would allow her to forget for a moment the stress of the classroom and receive a heartfelt reminder of that fact that she is seen. She is appreciated. She is heard. I’d love nothing more than for her to be able to enjoy in that appreciation and I do sincerely hope that she has the privilege of receiving such a wonderful gift." - Alejandro A.
"Mrs. Pantilione is one of the best teachers I have ever been taught by because she really teaches us and makes sure we can understand the content and how we might be able to use the knowledge in the future. She is a great teacher because she is so open-minded to ALL of her students and really gets to know the people she is teaching. Her class is a breath of fresh air for me especially because we really write and think about true, deep things and share our opinions and better ourselves in our thinking in subtle ways, but bettering ourselves all the more." - Sofia K.
"Mrs. Pantilione is an amazing teacher. I have learned more in just the beginning of her class this year than what I learned all last year. She continues to teach us with a positive and engaging manner and ensures that each and every one of us feel happy and accepted to be in her class. In a world when such an environment can be hard to find, being in Mrs. P's classroom feels like a safe place." - Eva R.
"Ms. Pantilione has been challenging me in a way that, sometimes, is a punch to the gut. That's not something an English teacher has done to me in a long time. I haven't done vocab quizzes with actual foreign words in years. She grades mercilessly and gives me a run for my money, especially with her strict rules on annotating the book we're reading right now, A Separate Peace. My usual experience with English teachers is that they see my writing, they think I'm a prodigy, and they give me a free-card for everything; they think I know everything and therefore don't give me much attention when it comes to assignments. But Ms. Pantilione has been making me have to try for that 100%. She throws things at me that I hate working on but actually feel proud of once I get an A and finish. She's extremely humorous and kind, but she's also a bit of a villain, putting her students (the heroes) through hardships that they have to learn to overcome. And even if she's the villain, what we learned from her obstacles is something to be thankful for." - Sayde N.
We want to thank everyone who nominated an exceptional teacher and especially to thank those who do the hard work of teaching every day. If you're a winning teacher, you'll receive a second email from us with instructions on how to claim your prize!
Here's Your Chance to Treat Your Teacher!
Another school year is here and teachers of all kinds are busy planning, prepping, and pouring themselves into their students' lives. You can help us celebrate the hard work and selflessness of educators everywhere!
Please join us in honoring the incredible people who devote themselves to serving and leading others by nominating an exceptional teacher in your life. They deserve it! Three worthy nominees will be chosen to have their praises sung here on our blog and win a package of Storiarts products worth over $300! Just fill out the form below to nominate your teacher today.
Don't delay! Nominations close September 28. Winners will be notified via email on September 30 and announced here on our blog. Nominations will be accepted for all types of teachers: coaches, fitness instructors, music teachers, college professors, etc. If they've inspired you to learn, then they're eligible, and we want to hear about them!