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Bringing students, teachers closer together

Sharon Evert — Hendricks Public Schools

In a lot of ways, being part of a small school is like being part of a family. And that’s part of what has made teaching at Hendricks Public School special, Sharon Evert said.

“With Hendricks being a small school and small class sizes, we are a very close family,” said Evert, who teaches fourth grade at Hendricks.

“We are very fortunate as teachers to be able to give so much one-on-one help when needed, we know all our students and their individual needs. They have developed close relationships with all their classmates and get along so well.”

Evert has been part of the Hendricks Public School community since 1990, and has had a lot of different roles over the past 30 years. She started out as a substitute teacher and a coach.

“I have always been interested in teaching. My mom was an elementary and special education teacher,” Evert said.

“I had a physical education degree, and then decided to pursue an elementary degree,” she said. Evert started out teaching a combination fifth and sixth grade class in Hendricks, and over the years she has also taught fifth grade, special education and fourth grade.

Evert says it’s working with students that she’s enjoyed most about her career.

“It is so great to interact with them, learn from them, help them understand the content and see them connect what they are learning to their own lives,” she said. She likes doing learning activities that are also fun for the kids. “I want my students to develop independence, become problem solvers, and have that drive to learn more. I love when my students are excited about learning,” Evert said.

A couple of areas that allow her to do hands-on projects are math and science.

“I enjoy teaching all subject areas, but love science and math,” Evert said. “I enjoy doing science labs and STEM projects, and hands-on learning activities for any subject area. Trying to make learning as fun as possible is my goal. This year with distancing has been a challenge to do some of the normal activities that I used to do.”

But while distance learning can make it hard to do hands-on projects, Evert said her students have been lucky enough to be able to have in-person class for most of the year. Students have also grown a lot as people in trying to get each other through the COVID-19 pandemic, she said.

“With all that has happened the past year, I feel our school and classmates have grown so much in compassion, caring, and kindness towards each other. They have been amazing with adapting to the new norm – masks, distancing, and sanitizing,” Evert said.

“The students say all the time, they will do what it takes so they don’t have to go on-line, distance learning. They need to be in school with their peers and face to face learning.”

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