Jen Barton, a fourth-grade teacher at Holmes Elementary School, has been honored by Junior Achievement of Lincoln as elementary educator of the year.
JA of Lincoln works to empower community volunteers to teacher JA curriculum - financial literacy, money management, entrepreneurship, and business ethics, and more, to classrooms in the area.
Barton explains how JA impacts the students in her classroom at Holmes.
1 - What is the value of having JA in your classroom?
I believe having a volunteer from the community come into the classroom to teach about the business world is very powerful for students. My fourth graders know they are learning from someone who is living and experiencing the business world day in and day out. To learn about business skills from someone who is an expert and not their teacher seems to be more meaningful to students.
2 - How do you see the long-term impact of their role in teaching curriculum, even after they have left the classroom?
It won’t be long before these students are applying for their first jobs and going in for interviews. The knowledge they gain from having JA will certainly help them confidently reach their goals in the future.
3 - What is the value to students of having 'another voice' to compliment what you teach?
In our fourth-grade curriculum, students read about kid entrepreneurs and the history of money. For a JA volunteer to come and teach my students about business reinforces the vocabulary and concepts we have learned about in class. During JA, students also learn about other kids their age who have started businesses. Having someone outside of our school community share their expertise is valuable because there are often life skill lessons that compliment what has been taught in the classroom. My JA volunteer’s lessons go beyond just business skills when she teaches about the importance of being prepared and organized, having good communication skills and being a friendly person.
Published: June 16, 2017, Updated: June 16, 2017