|
|
The Suburbanite
  • Amherst teacher builds on what students already know

  • Deborah Lab is a reading teacher at Amherst Elementary and this month’s featured teacher from Jackson Local Schools. Lab has been teaching in the district for 30 years. She has plenty of classroom experience and knows that building on what a student knows works better than most other teaching techniques.

    • email print
  • Deborah Lab is a reading teacher at Amherst Elementary and this month’s featured teacher from Jackson Local Schools. Lab has been teaching in the district for 30 years. She has plenty of classroom experience and knows that building on what a student knows works better than most other teaching techniques.
    “For those thinking of going into teaching, working from what a student already knows instead of what he or she doesn’t know works best for the student,” Lab said. “It’s helpful for potential teachers to know that being patient, flexible and positive in the classroom helps, too.”
    Lab was born and raised in Stark County and has spent her entire teaching career with Jackson Local Schools.
    Home: Lab lives in Jackson Township. She graduated from Massillon Washington High School.  
    Teaching position: She is a Reading Recovery Program and reading intervention teacher for grades 1-3. She has also taught 4th grade at Amherst Elementary.  
    Credentials: After attending Muskingum University for her undergrad, Lab attended The Ohio State University and Ashland University for her graduate studies.  
    Family: Lab’s husband, Jeff, is retired from McKinley High School, where he was athletic director. Her son, James, is a senior at the University of Dayton and daughter Kaitlyn is a junior at the University of Akron. Both of her children graduated from Jackson Local.
    Mantra she lives by: “Treat others with kindness and respect.”
    Became a teacher because: Lab likes learning and likes to share what she has learned with others.
    Role models: Her first principal, Agnes Napier, and her last principal, Elaine Ferguson
    Memorable book: Any James Patterson or Alex Cross book
    Music: Pop music
    Favorite TV show: “Big Bang Theory”
    Three things to do in this lifetime:
    1. Travel to Europe
    2. Win in Las Vegas or Cleveland at least one time
    3. Pay off children’s college costs
    A take-your-breath-away moment: “Any time I hear a nonreader read their first book is a take-your-breath-away moment for me.”
    An “aha” moment that changed her life: “I’ve had a couple. First, the birth of both of my children changed my life. Second, it was meaningful when one of my past students became a 5th-grade teacher in this building. And, every time I have a struggling reader become very successful in adult life. I have one student that went on to become a doctor.”
    Words that she would use to describe herself:
    1. Creative
    2. Caring
    Page 2 of 2 - 3. Giving
    Most creative when: “I feel most creative when I’m in the shower. I am constantly thinking how I could teach something in a new way. ”
    I really wish I knew how to: Sail a boat
    Secret talent: Baking
    General comments: “I like to engage my students so they enjoy learning. All students can learn to be lifelong learners as long as they’re motivated. I build on what they know so that they are inspired to learn more.
    “I’ve been blessed to have lived in Jackson Township and worked in Jackson Local Schools. Students from this district, including my own children, have received the best education around. My administrators and staff have been supportive and made my teaching experience awesome.”
    What others are saying: “Deb Lab is one of those teachers that teach because she loves kids and loves to see them grow,” said Kathy Roberts, administrative assistant at Amherst Elementary school. “Some of the kids are struggling with reading when they start her class, and by the time they finish, they are reading at their grade level. Her reading program is excellent. Deb is one those teachers that I could go on and on about because she is so good at what she does.”

        calendar