TEACHER OF THE WEEK: Crystal Hodges of La Grange Elementary School

LENOIR COUNTY, N.C. (WITN) - WITN’s Teacher of the Week for January 31 is Crystal Hodges of La Grange Elementary School located in Lenoir County.

Hodges is in her 13th year of teaching at La Grange Elementary School. She recently earned her National Board Certification. A graduate of East Carolina University, she has a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance Performance with a minor in business administration and a Master of Arts in Teaching in Elementary Education. She is also certified to teach academically and intellectually gifted students, is a clinical teacher through ECU's Latham Clinical Schools Network, and serves on her school's PBIS committee.

Hodges has previously taught 4th, 1st, and 2nd grade students. In 2017, she was a winner of a Bright Ideas Grant and the Lenoir County Education Foundation Mini-Grant.

Hodges says she loves teaching because each day she has the opportunity to share her love of learning with her students. She gets to plan lessons and create activities that develop their experiences. She enjoys seeing students engaged and enthusiastic about their learning.

The person who nominated Hodges wrote: “During the summers, she teaches kindergarten and first grade English Language Learners at Pink Hill Elementary School. At the end of the program, she teaches free Zumba lessons to all of the students who participate. This talented educator is also a published children’s book author and her students have become published authors as well. A copy of her students’ books are in the LaGrange Public Library, Kinston-Neuse Public Library, and the LaGrange Elementary School library. Earlier this year, she was a grant winner with the Lenoir County Education Foundation. Since each of her students use iPads for instruction, she received headphones for her students to use to improve their learning. An advocate for students, her class has collected Box Tops for Education and has been the top winning class for her grade level two years in a row. She has organized fundraisers for her school which has shown a 10% increase in membership that was recognized by the North Carolina PTA. Crystal is a dedicated and hardworking professional and deserves to be recognized for her many accomplishments in her chosen field of expertise.”

Congratulations to Crystal Hodges!

Every week during the school year WITN will recognize a Teacher of the Week on WITN News at Sunrise.The winner receives a plaque and $100 Walmart gift card.

To nominate your teacher, email TOTW@witn.com.