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Hawthorne teacher wins $5,000 Teacher Appreciation Week surprise


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  • Stephanie Montez, Hawthorne principal/Mesa Public Schools

Diana Bamper

Valley Honda Dealers awarded Diana Bamper, Mesa Public Schools kindergarten teacher, $5,000 in classroom supplies and equipment at a schoolwide assembly.

Ms. Bamper is an incredibly giving teacher. She is often one of the first to arrive at school and the last to leave. As much as I tell her not to, she is always at school on the weekends, working to ensure her students have the best possible experiences when they come to school.

Hawthorne teacher wins $5,000 Teacher Appreciation Week surprise bamper.hawthorne.awardedhonda.HP_

Hawthorne Elementary Principal Stephanie Montez nominated Diana Bamper for the award. Lauren Kay of Valley Honda Dealers presented the prizes. Photo courtesy Mesa Public Schools

Ms. Bamper’s classroom is used as a model for how to ensure that students are surrounded with learning.

If her kindergarten students are learning about plants, then her entire classroom and the outside of her classroom become a garden.

This year, she started the “Kinder Garden” outside her classroom. Using tires as planters, she created an herb garden, flower garden and vegetable garden, much of it grown by students from seed.

She involved our sixth-graders in painting the tires. Everyone has commented on how her efforts have beautified the campus.

Because of all that she does, her students are always excited to come to school and share what they are learning with others. Ms. Bamper is always the first to volunteer to work with students who need help after school, and she still finds time to be on committees that help the school community. At any after school events, Ms. Bamper is always happy to contribute and be there with a smile.

Hawthorne teacher wins $5,000 Teacher Appreciation Week surprise bamper.hawthorne.awardedhonda.026.th_.050514She chairs the school’s Tribes Committee, which is the positive behavior system we use at Hawthorne to help build communities in our classrooms.

Because of her leadership, the Tribes Program has been a true success at our school.

We are the only Tribes certified school in Mesa, so this has not been an easy accomplishment.

She often comes up with ideas that help put smiles on the faces of students, staff and parents alike, such as her idea to present appreciations during morning announcements and to have teachers write student appreciations in different themes and post them on the outside of their classroom doors.

On top of all of the extra effort she puts in, she is always smiling. She has a contagiously positive attitude. In my 18 years in education, I can’t possibly think of anyone else who is more deserving than Diana Bamper. She is an incredible asset to our school community.