RIO GRANDE, Ohio – The University of Rio Grande and Rio Grande Community College Bunce School of Education welcomed Ohio Teacher of the Year Dustin Weaver as a guest speaker for the annual spring meeting. Diane Downard, chair for the school of education, said the department hosts fall and spring meetings to keep students informed about any changes in the field and let them create a discussion beyond the classroom.
“This gives us a chance to update our students on additional information about our programs and the field. It also allows all our faculty, staff and students in the department a chance to interact as one unit,” Downard said. “I thought it would be great to invite Dustin to speak to the students and let them hear about his classroom experiences that helped him achieve this recognition.”
Weaver, an English teacher at Chillicothe High School, said he enjoyed the opportunity to share his personal experiences in teaching and meet students and faculty from Rio.
“It’s important to speak to education majors because they are the future of classroom teachers. I want to empower and inspire them to feel the same passion for education I have,” Weaver said. “I also feel it’s important to make sure they understand the importance and power an effective teacher possesses to help students learn. I’m grateful for the opportunity to speak at Rio. I’ve had a student teacher from the Bunce School of Education, Jessica DeLong, who is now my coworker and remarkable testament to the quality of this program.”
Downard said she enjoyed Weaver’s presentation and is glad her students were able to take part in the discussion.
“I was inspired by how much he emphasized student learning. It’s so easy to get wrapped up in the requirements, strategies and assessments and forget to put student learning first. It made me reflect and evaluate my own teaching, and I hope the students will carry that idea with them into their own classrooms,” Downard said. “The students hear from us as their professors, but to have a teacher sharing their own field experiences gives them a realistic view of what to expect. We feel this helps them see the ideas we teach put into practice and gives them a better understanding of the concepts, enhancing the quality of learning for them as well as their future students.”
For more information on the Bunce School of Education, contact the Admissions Office at 740-245-7208.