“I want my students to own their education.” - Ms. Jefferson
Ms. Jefferson is a special education teacher and an inclusion teacher for ELA and Science. She has been teaching at AMS for 3 years and before that, she taught at AHS for 17 years. Ms. Jefferson loves watching her students grow into responsible leaders. Ms. Jefferson loves coming to work and seeing all of her students, different personalities. “I smile every day because of my students”, Ms. Jefferson says. Ms. Jefferson teaches students that struggle like she struggled in school. “I know that everyone can learn”, she says. “You just have to find out how they learn and teach them to apply their way of learning to the subjects that they struggle in”. Ms. Jefferson wants her students to look at their writing as a strength. “I want my students to change the world with their writing”, Ms. Jefferson says. “I want my students to own their education.”.
Currently, Ms. Jefferson is teaching her students journalistic writing. “It’s a difficult type of writing, but I believe that once the unit is finished, students will benefit from the writing”. Students have been creating websites where they will eventually publish the stories they write.
Ms. Jefferson had teachers that changed her life in High School, and she wanted to change the lives of students like her teachers did. Ms. Jefferson grew up in Asheville and graduated from Asheville High. She is certified to teach K-12 special education.
Ms. Jefferson's favorite teaching moment was when she was driving a bus load of her student back from a field trip and a turkey flew across the interstate. Ms. Jefferson hit the turkey and the students quickly took sides on whether or not she hit the turkey on purpose. After she realized that this would be an incredible learning opportunity, she decided that students should write a court case on whether she was guilty or innocent. Students spent many weeks working on their paper, and Ms. Jefferson set up a courtroom in her classroom. There were judges, lawyers, defendants and more. The case was called the Turkeycide! One student who participated in the case as a lawyer says “It made an important skill fun to learn, I finally understand persuasive writing“. Ms. Jefferson always finds fun ways to teach challenging and important subjects.
Story by Kate Buys