Friday, September 10, 2010

Headmistress Brigitte Tennis of Stella Schola Middle School is a Jewel!

Brigitte Tennis
Headmistress Brigitte Tennis, is an award-winning 8th grade teacher of Lake Washington District's  Stella Schola. Middle School on Rose Hill.   Brigitte is one gem of an educator! 
On September 22, Mrs. Tennis will be flying to New York to accept a national teaching award on Martha Stewart's Living program  featured on the Hallmark Channel.  It will be a live taped program, so stay tuned!   Brigitte is joining six other teachers from across the nation to receive national recognition for teaching excellence and a $1500 school award for her school.   For more information click "Jones Classroom Award". 

Halfway through my interview with Brigitte, I realized her New York award is just one of many facets to her commitment and passion as an educator:    

Mrs. Tennis  is a teacher and an entrepreneur.  She founded Stella Schola over a decade ago; Schola is the District's fourth public Choice school and first traditional 6-8 middle school.

In 2009, Mrs. Tennis was asked to contribute to a collection of inspirational stories from America's top educators called "Today I Made a Difference',  Edited by Joseph W. Underwood.   On  page 155 & page 162 of Brigitte's story "Teaching Gems",  I quote Brigitte:
"But, within the everyday work of striving to instill the fire of learning in our young people, small gems show themselves in tiny, but flashy sparkles - the challenge is, how observant are you - the teacher?  Can you catch those glimmers of gemstone in the classroom?"
"So when people ask me why I am a teacher, I just smile and tell them of the treasured gems that I have collected over the years.  I have a whole chest of beautiful sparkling jewels, and that's enough for me!"   Read more....
>> Brigitte is passionate about teaching. Her students take 15 field trips per year. Every year they go to D.C. Next year they travel to Rome. Every student graduating has taken Latin. Schola students have one teacher for each grade; 30 students/class, and their scores exceed District levels.

>> Brigitte's students love Latin so much, she volunteered to teach higher levels over the summer and on Saturday's during the school year.

>> Brigitte's credentials a long:  Disney American Teacher Award 2004 Honoree, National Board Certified English Teacher, 2006 Honor Society Advisor

Though Stella Schola is only 90 students and three classrooms all in portables behind Rose Hill Junior High it draws positive attention from the District.  School Board member Nancy Bernard taught several classes on health and safety recently, Brigitte said.  Kudos to educator Brigitte Tennis!

Interviewed by Bob Yoder


Anonymous said...

Wow, what fun going to New York and being on the Martha Stewart show was! She is really an amazing woman!

Thank you, Bob, for the nice story on your blog! I really enjoyed talking to you!

~ Brigitte Tennis

Bob Yoder said...

I watched the show on Hallmark and was impressed with the clothes you all modeled. It was hard to hear, but it sounded like $1500 went to the teachers for the clothes, etc. and $500 went for school supplies.

Anonymous said...

hi i go to Stella, i was wondering if you mr. bob could do an interveiw on her again and ask the students how they feel about her too.
~anonymous stella student