Northshore science teachers honored

teachers honored by Karen Diefendorf
Three teachers in the Northshore School District recently received awards from the Washington Science Teachers Association for their outstanding contributions.
    Ann Swain, from Woodin Elementary, was selected as the state's Science Teacher of the Year in the state of Washington at the elementary level. In response to news of her award, she said, "I work hard to provide the best for my students. It feels good to be appreciated by parents and school staff."
    Among Swain's most memorable accomplishments over the past 24 years has been the effect she's had on children's lives.
    "It has been gratifying for me when children who are now adults write letters or come to visit and tell me how I've affected their lives," Swain said.
    Penny Lafavour of Kenmore Jr. High was named Washington Science Teacher of the Year at the junior high level.
    "I was very happy and excited," Lafavour said. "It's nice to be recognized by your peers, but at the same time it is very humbling. Teachers aren't used to being recognized in public."
    She said her fondest memories during her eight years as a teacher have been her daily interactions with the students.
    "I like getting to know them personally for the people they are and watching them grow over time," she said.
    Bothell High science teacher Sherman Williamson was named Regional Secondary Teacher of the Year, Region VI.
    He also felt it was an honor to be recognized by his peers. "It's a boost that all teachers doing quality work can be recognized," he explained. "The awards say something very positive about the Northshore School District."
    When Williamson thinks back over his 24 years in the classroom, he remembers not only the achievements of his outstanding science students but those with no interest in science, whom he helped enjoy and understand the subject. Many of them went on to pursue more science, he said.
    All three teachers were recognized and received certificates at a statewide conference and banquet in Pullman Nov. 3. The state winners received $750.