Teacher of the Week: Mrs. Ann Sullivan of Hiawatha Elementary - WREX.com – Rockford’s News Leader

Teacher of the Week: Mrs. Ann Sullivan of Hiawatha Elementary

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Making the kids feel comfortable when starting a full day of school is one of the most important things a teacher can do.

At least that's what Ann Sullivan of Hiawatha Elementary believes.

Starting kindergarten can be a daunting experience. That's exactly what Ashley Plote was feeling on her first couple of days this year.

"She had a lot of anxiety about going to school all day and being away from Mom and Dad," her mom, Heather, says.

She nominated Mrs. Sullivan because she says she could sense Ashley's fear and nervousness and took her under her wing.

"I think it was the trust issue, that she was going to be okay, she could follow me," Mrs. Sullivan says. "We're going to walk through this every step of the way and as long as it took, we were going to do it. We were going to do it together, and she was going to have fun, and she was going to like school."

But Mrs. Sullivan says it's different for every student. Some you can approach, and some need their space.

"The most important thing is to get to know them sort of first and get a feel for them first, and talk to their parents and what they like and what they don't like," Mrs. Sullivan says. "Some children want a hug, some children don't want a hug. Some children just need a little reassurance."

And she tries to find that in each and every one of her students. Because she says once you get over that first hurdle, you're ready to continue to grow throughout your school years.

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