Editor’s Note: Yukon Public Schools’ 11 “Teacher of the Year” finalists are being profiled in The Yukon Progress. Finalists were selected by peers to represent their school sites. A committee of past YPS winners and professional development representatives will select the Teacher of the Year with the winner announced at a March 26 banquet.
Bethany Gilreath has been made the 2019-20 Teacher of the Year for Shedeck Elementary School. This is Bethany’s first year teaching kindergarten at Shedeck but her sixth year as an educator.
Her prior experience includes two years as a first-grade teacher at Shedeck Elementary, and three years as a kindergarten teacher at Western Oaks Elementary School in the Putnam City school district.
Gilreath is proud to call herself a Yukon Miller. She moved to Yukon halfway through her third-grade year and graduated from Yukon in 2010.
Gilreath has a bachelor’s degree in Early Childhood and Elementary Education from Southern Nazarene University. She knew from an early age that she wanted to be a teacher. Gilreath has always had a love for kids and for education.
Some of her most memorable moments were when she was in elementary school. She remembers all the fun experiences she had while in school.
One of those experiences was being able to have a family reading night where she got to go to school in the evening in her pajamas with her family. They got to go to many different rooms in the school and read and take AR tests.
It was just one experience that showed her just how fun reading and school could be.
Gilreath also recalls being able to be a part of a student leadership group in fourth and fifth grade and loved being able to help students solve problems.
She would also be one of the first people to meet and introduce her school to new students that came throughout the year.
Gilreath believes that every student has potential, they just must find what things spark their interest and motivates them to want to learn.
She finds joy in finding new ways to engage her students in learning, whether that be through creating new games and activities that will make learning fun, or by incorporating technology into the classroom.
Gilreath enjoys teaching kindergarten because she says that it’s the first impression of school that a lot of kids have. She wants them to have a great first experience of what school is like.
Gilreath strives to have a classroom community that loves and cares for each other.
Gilreath loves working at Shedeck and being part of such an amazing community of teachers.