This year’s Teacher of the Year has been with Amity schools since 2006. Described by her colleagues as “lighthearted and approachable, she will always make the time for you and never makes you feel like you are
unintelligent with respect to technology,” the Amity Teacher of the Year from Amity Middle School in Orange is Kristen Yaekel.
Kristen started her work at Amity as an English teacher and now serves as the school’s library media specialist. Kristen’s colleagues note that she is always available to support faculty and staff. She is amazing at technology, and whether the issue is small or major she responds quickly. They know that can always rely on Kristen. Whether it is to spark some enthusiasm with the students, support school activities, organize a field trip, or clean up at the end of a day, Kristen is always first to help.
As a teacher, Kristen is enthusiastic and always willing to try new things. She was one of the first teachers to Skype with the outside world, so her students get a firsthand account of how life is in other places, and she continues to help other teachers connect their students to the world around us.
As a teacher Kristen is amazing, and students enjoy her instruction. As the building’s library media specialist
she has brought a new ambiance, joy, and rich learning experience to the library area. She was nominated by
her peers not only because of her expertise in technology and instruction, but also for her patience, persistence,
and kind helpful spirit.
She has been a tremendous support with distance learning, not only to the staff but also to the students. As noted by a teacher at Amity Middle School in Orange, “When our learning and global community was in chaos her calm comforting spirit, her understanding of my goals, and her expertise was how I got through to the other side.” Kristen is going to be an exemplary representative as Amity’s 2020 Teacher of the Year.