By the time Teresa Davidson became a 6th grade social studies and 8th grade American history teacher for Norwalk schools, she had already heard about the district’s positive reputation. “I was teaching in Des Moines and had always heard such great things about Norwalk.”
While still a teacher in Des Moines, she and a few colleagues spent the day in Norwalk to shadow other educators. According to Davidson, “We followed some of the Norwalk teachers around for the day, and I was hooked.”
Fortuitously, the next year a position opened up in the district. “I applied and, fortunately, was offered the position,” says Davidson.
Upon her hire, Davidson received guiding perspective about teaching in Norwalk. She says, “Denny Wulf, who was the principal at time when I was hired, said, ‘We always do what’s best for the students.’ After 18 years of teaching in Norwalk, I believe that!”
Those sentiments underscore what she has enjoyed throughout her career. “The thing about teaching that I have enjoyed the most is the relationships that I build with the students.” She adds, “I think most of them are comfortable with me and know that I enjoy them.”
Sarah Adams, dean of students at Eastview, would agree. “She is personable and truly cares about each of her students. She pushes them to be the best students and people they can be.”
One major accomplishment she is proud of this past year is the success of the planned learning community (PLC) she and her colleagues were involved with. Her PLC team consisted of 6th, 7th, and 8th grade social studies teachers. According to Davidson, “We met daily and worked collaboratively to improve teaching skills and the academic performance of students.”
Furthermore, Davidson says the team had one major initiative they aimed to reach this past school year. “Our big goal was to work with the students on supporting their answers with evidence. It has been a very successful goal.”
As Davidson’s career continues to evolve, she says, “I always plan on working with kids in some way. I feel they keep me young at heart, and I love their humor.”
When she isn’t in the classroom, Davidson enjoys time with family. “I love spending time with my kids and grandkids, biking, and traveling,” she says.