MAT Blog

Teachers of the Year Have One Thing in Common: Commitment.

Posted by Colleen Cadieux on Apr 26, 2012 12:21:00 PM

We salute Teacher of the Year Christie Sabon, Marygrove MAT '06Exceptional teachers are easy to spot. We immediately know them when we see them, but articulating the difference between an exceptional teacher and all of the others isn’t so easy. Test scores and observations alone cannot define the teacher that stands out ‘head and shoulders’ above the rest: teachers like Christie Sabon, Marygrove MAT ’06.

Christie is a nine-year teacher with a passion for teaching students to read and write. She’s the teacher who always raises her hand to sit on review committees if it will improve her craft or benefit her students. Her dedication has earned her Teacher of the Year in the Farmington Schools district in Michigan. She even won a free one-year lease on a new car from a local dealership--that’s how much the Farmington community values its educators!

Talking with Christie takes you back to all the favorite teachers you’ve had in school. She is compassionate and kind, and so enthusiastic about her work. It doesn’t take long to realize that she views her job as “figuring out what makes her students tick,” and the reasons for her award become crystal clear. 

“My second graders love to read the “Black Lagoon” series from [humorist, children’s author] Mike Thaler, so for National Reading Month this year we went all out and decorated the room like a jungle, complete with a giant alligator to greet you at the door!” Sabon says.

Not one to do anything half-way, Sabon says her students benefit the most from her modeling good behaviors; something she learned from the Marygrove Master in the Art of Teaching Program.

“I always make sure my students see me reading at my desk, and writing in my own journal,” Sabon says. “Sometimes I read my journal entries to them…they are so curious about what I find interesting. My students really keep me on my toes—they ask me to read two picture books to them each day, and they hold me to it!” So she makes the time.

Sabon also credits the Marygrove MAT program with training her to interact with parents effectively. Good teachers know that success comes more easily when you involve parents in classroom goals. But forming positive partnerships does take extra time.

“I connect with parents every single week, whether it is through e-mail or a newsletter I send home with students,” Sabon adds, “It’s important to touch base with the home front; it is really appreciated…and my students like that I tell their parents about our adventures—it makes them feel good, too."

Sabon knows that informing parents of progress on individual/class goals and upcoming events is best practice in education, and the rewards are great.

Research supports it. Renowned Johns Hopkins researcher Joyce Epstein has been touting the virtue of frequent interactions between schools, families, and communities for years. She asserts that the more time teachers spend communicating with students’ families, the more likely students will receive messages about the importance of working hard and staying in school.

From what we hear, this is not a problem for students in Ms. Sabon’s class at Hillside elementary--Sabon’s students never want to leave her classroom!

So, we congratulate this Teacher of the Year who is not only very giving of her time, but is also generous with her endorsement of her alma mater. If you want to be a better teacher, Christie Sabon highly recommends earning an MAT degree as a way to improve your game. “Many of our teachers in the [Farmington] district are Marygrove MAT alums, and we are big fans of the program.”

Thank you Christie, and thank you Farmington Schools!

Hurry and register for summer classes, and get started on your way to becoming the outstanding teacher leader you always wanted to be! We are taking applications through Wednesday, May 2!

Apply for the Marygrove MAT





Tags: Marygrove MAT, working teachers, teachers, master's degree

Don’t wait until summer to start your MAT program!

Posted by Colleen Cadieux on Feb 7, 2012 2:42:00 PM

describe the imageAre you putting off submitting your application to the Marygrove College Master in the Art of Teaching (MAT) program? Stop procrastinating! Our asynchronous course schedule offers some solid reasons for why you should get started in March, before summer starts.

Of course, spring is a very busy time for teachers, but there are some clear advantages to beginning the program while you still have a classroom full of students. First of all, you will be able to directly apply the theory and strategies you learn to your practice right away. Second, being able to physically demonstrate the new ideas and material to others helps you internalize it as a student. It’s a practical way to get started with your online learning!

What’s more, the first class you take is a leadership course which can give you the tools you need to analyze and assess your current school year, so you can make the appropriate changes for next fall. Teacher As Leader will require you to use the summer to work and plan out changes that will make the new school year even better. It’s perfect timing. So why wait?

Get credit for what you already do in your job!

If you take your first class in March, that means your third class would be an instructional design class from July to the end of August. (07/09/2012 – 08/25/2012). Teachers are usually working on their lesson plans at this time– so as we see it, you might as well get college credit for it! The Instructional Design course will help you prepare your lesson plans early, so you will know what materials you’ll need in advance, allowing you to take advantage of those summer Teacher Store sales in July and August! This is a real plus for your budget.

Remember, the sooner you start, the sooner you finish…and the sooner you start reaping the rewards of higher education. After all, you aren’t the only one who benefits from your hard work. Your students will also gain from your knowledge and expertise. The more you know, the more your students will know, too. If you begin classes in March, you will have completed the lion’s share of MAT coursework by the 2013-14 school year, (and be well-prepared for the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) accountability standards).

Your time is valuable: Make use of your graduate-level credits!

If your state requires you to have graduate-level credits to renew your teacher certification, then it should definitely go toward something – like a master’s degree! A March start date also means that teachers can get the credits they need for teacher certification renewal. An upcoming deadline for some teachers is June 30, which is right around the corner.

Don’t wait another day: Earning your online Marygrove MAT degree will enhance your career in teaching. You can’t beat these real-world benefits:

  • Entire program can be completed in as little as 18 months by taking one class at a time.
  • Marygrove MAT program is hands-on; focused on the practical application of educational theory. That’s why our students prepare field-based, final Capstone projects, and not a thesis.
  • Students attend class anywhere that has Internet access. At home, at your desk before or after work, or even on vacation!
  • Homework can be done whenever it’s convenient for you!

 If you’ve already made up your mind to earn your master’s degree—enroll for March and get a leg-up on next year.  Don’t put off what can be achieved today—it’s your future. And the future of your students.

Enroll now by calling 855-628-6279! An enrollment specialist is waiting to help you.

Tags: Marygrove MAT, working teachers, teachers, master's degree

Our Most Popular Blog Posts

Subscribe to the Marygrove MAT Blog!

Comments on this Blog Post