"Teaching is the greatest career in the world because without teachers, there would be no other careers," said James Micik, 6th grade science teacher at Eastern Middle School and 2014 Distinguished Teacher.
Six Greenwich Public School teachers received much more than a gold star on Teacher Appreciation Day Tuesday afternoon.
"Being a teacher means inspiring students everyday to learn, challenge themselves and be the best people that they can be," said Sheri McGowan, a 1st grade teacher at Riverside School and 2014 Distinguished Teacher.
The six were the recipients of the 2014 Distinguished Teacher Award, a honor recognizing and celebrating excellence among the teaching staff of the Greenwich Public Schools.
Mara Adelsberg, a Guidance Counselor at Greenwich High School and site coordinator for the AVID program said, "It's probably one of the most important roles in a students life. Sometimes teachers arguably spend more time with a student than their families because they are in the school all day long, so they play a really instrumental role."
Lin Yuan Young teaches Mardarin Chinese at Greenwich High School. "I am from an educators family. Both my parents are educators and my in-laws are educators, as well as my sister and my brother in law so it is such a big honor for our family."
Students, parents & co-workers nominated the recipients, sharing stories of how they go above and beyond for their students.
After three years of Mandarian study at GHS, Rebecca Murray now speaks fluent Mandarian and delivered her remarks about Ms. Young in both English and Mandarian. "Thank you so much for giving me and my classmates this incredible opportunity," she said
Honorees say for them, teaching is more than just their job.
"I really do love being an elementary school teacher and working with young children that just seem to have those "ah-ha" moments all the time. I love to be able to be there to witness their creative problem solving that they have through arts," said Dr. Cheryl Iozoo, a art teacher at North Street School and a 2014 honoree.
"We help shape their view of education. If they have a positive experience when they are in first grade and whent they are very young, they take that and carry that with them as they continue throughout school. I think it is essential that they have a positive, nurturing, warm experience so they can take risks and move on to be amazing adults," said McGowan.