Oklahoma Stories

SKIE Award Regional Winners Announced

January 2021

The SKIE (Supporting K20 Innovative Educators) Award celebrates educators or teams of educators across the state.

Central Region

Angela MartinezAngela Martinez | Kindergarten
Stanley Hupfeld Academy
Oklahoma City Public Schools

Angela Martinez has taught for eight years. She is passionate about integrating technology into education, believing it to be a tool that encourages students to explore their curiosity. Martinez’ students enjoy freedom in how they learn—they are allowed to use technology to record their thinking, create stories, and use their imaginations. Using apps, smart toys, augmented reality, robots, and other kinds of technology, Martinez’ students learned how to code, created their stories through videos, explored space, and more. Martinez has also started an after-school technology program with materials funded through small grants. “Technology can be a tool that is as much empowering to teachers as it is for students,” Martinez says.

Southeast Region

Carol JonesCarol Jones | 6th-8th Grade Librarian
Shawnee Middle School
Shawnee Public Schools

Having worked as a librarian at every grade level during her 13 years of teaching, Carol Jones is dedicated to all her students’ educations. Jones currently serves as Shawnee Middle School’s librarian and acts as a technology mentor for the building. Jones’ teaching philosophy is that technology paired with real-world stories hooks students and makes their learning engaging. Her innovative approach invites students to develop their own questions, referencing learning materials. “As they read, they discussed how the fiction story aligned with the historical documents,” Jones says of a unit on the Tulsa Race Massacre. “There were points where the classes absolutely needed time to stop, decompress, discuss together.”

Northeast Region

Kallie BarnesKallie Barnes
9th Grade ELA (& Honors ELA)
Wagoner High School
Wagoner Public Schools

Kallie Barnes began teaching at Wagoner Public Schools, as a 9th grade English Language Arts teacher in 2009 after spending nine years teaching elementary school. Barnes believes in the power of authentic teaching practices. Her students participate in community-centered projects, including group presentations over local nonprofits (where students compete for a donation to be made in their name to the winning charity) and the “Butterfly Project” (where students analyze poetry collected from the Terezin concentration camp and express their interpretations on paper butterflies). “Authenticity is a cornerstone of my classroom. My goal is not to teach students what to think, but to teach them how to think,” Barnes says.

Tulsa Area Region

Sara CarterSarah Carter | High School Math (Pre-Calculus, Statistics, Algebra 2)
Coweta High School
Coweta Public Schools

As a high school teacher for her hometown, Coweta, Oklahoma, Sarah Carter strives to create engaging, creative activities that help students connect math to real-world situations. Carter’s students are the first math students to participate in Coweta’s Pinwheels for Peace community art installation. Instead of decorating pinwheels with freeform art or written reflections, Carter’s students use graphing functions to create geometric art. This project reflects an authentic use of math in the real world. “Too often in math class, graphing is seen as a task that only shows up in textbooks. I want my students to leave this class with first-hand experience that we can use math to make a positive difference in the world around us,” Carter says.

Northwest Region

Heasley-scarrittJade Scarritt (left) and Sara Heasley (right)
Kindergarten
El Reno Public Schools District

Jade Scarritt and Sara Heasley teach kindergarten virtually with the Hillcrest Learning Center. They have 20 years of combined teaching experience and are dedicated to growing their skills and adapting to new technology to better support their students and students’ families. “When early childhood educators make learning exciting, authentic, and fun, children are more likely to become lifelong learners. The rise of COVID-19 has forced us to rethink how to achieve this goal,” they explain. The pair has helped their school provide each student in need with a tablet and Wi-Fi. This means each student receives an equal opportunity to learn, no matter their family’s experience with prior technology or financial resources.

Category: Oklahoma Stories

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