Monroe County School District
Teacher of the Year 2017
Key Largo School
Samantha Hopper, 4th grade teacher at Key Largo School has been chosen as the Monroe County School District Teacher of the Year for 2016-17. Superintendent Mark Porter visited Ms. Hopper’s classroom today to give her the news.
Ms. Hopper has a Master’s Degree from the University of Florida with a Math/Science Specialization and has been teaching at Key Largo School since August 2013. She has been a recipient of the Florida Best and Brightest Scholarship for the past two years. Ms. Hopper’s passion for teaching comes through in her high expectations for students and through her innovative teaching style which incorporates research based programs, project based learning and collaboration for students. As an AVID trained educator, she thrives on utilizing current student data to prepare for instruction. She is known for the Socratic Seminars that occur in her room which engage all students in reading and discussion. Samantha is also busy with other school activities. She has been a VIEW (Visiting Innovative Educators’ Workplace) program host, a grade level team leader and performs numerous coaching jobs for both volleyball and basketball. She is also a mentor to new and beginning teachers. Samantha participated in the development of the District’s new writing sequence. She is an Elementary Site Team Member for AVID and uses AVID best practices like Costa’s Levels for Questions, two column notes and reading and writing strategies daily.
KLS Principal, Laura Lietaert describes Samantha as a person who, "makes teaching look easy" and further states that "it is a pleasure to walk into her classroom and become absorbed in the learning - it’s a place that kids want to be." Superintendent Mark Porter said "Samantha is an outstanding example of the fine teachers that we have in the Monroe County School System. She clearly demonstrates the importance of strong relationships with students as a vehicle for success and she is a truly deserving recipient of this recognition."