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We are proud to welcome the following teachers to the WJRZ Teachers Who Rock  Class of 2020.

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Brought To You By:

5th Grade Teacher at Berkeley Township Elementary
Nominated by: Kevin Waldron, Assistant Principal & Corey Steinmetz, Co-Teacher

Enthusiastic, Energetic, and Creative. These are just a few words that describe Lindsay Quigley, a 5th grade inclusion teacher at Berkeley Township Elementary School in Bayville. Mrs. Quigley is part of an extremely dynamic inclusion team where true differentiation takes place. To say Mrs. Quigley is special would be an understatement. From her fun personality, infectious laugh, to her unique ideas it is easy to see why her classroom is one of the most highly requested rooms by parents.

At the heart of teaching is the ability to make positive and lasting connections with the students. This feat is something that many new and seasoned educators truly struggle with. Mrs. Quigley not only excels at this, but also is able to share this talent with other staff members. Her ability to help even the most reserved students bring out their inner excitement is remarkable to watch. Students often come back to her classroom for advice, guidance, or even some comic relief! This is when you know a true connection has been made.

Another reason Mrs. Quigley’s classroom stands apart is the “My Classmates Think I’m Awesome” Lawn Sign. Every few weeks the class votes on students in their room who they think are awesome and are doing their best work. The selected students get to take home the lawn sign and display it proudly in their front yard.

Recently her class created their own “Thanksgiving Day Parade” within in the school, and her also get to volunteer in the school garden.

If all of that wasn’t enough, she spends all of her free time with her family as a hockey Mom! Her dedication and passion for her family shines through.

Mrs. Quigley is truly an irreplaceable asset to Berkeley Township Elementary School. Her experience, positivity, and fun loving personality are second to none, truly making her a Teacher Who Rocks!

7th Grade Social Studies teacher at Southern Regional Middle School
Nominated by: Sara Cimino, Co-Teacher

Mr. Power makes history come alive through various activities. Students participate in a Model United Nations, as well as multiple “investigation” activities in which they act as detectives to make conclusions about historical events such as the death of Julius Caesar and the Bubonic Plague. With these projects, students feel as if they are living history rather than just reading about it. Each week, Mr. Power brings global issues into his classroom through discussion of current events. challenging students to consider issues through various, unbiased lenses.

In addition to interactive activities, Mr. Power helps to strengthen student writing. Through writing multiple essays, by the end of the year students are able to analyze difficult historical documents, and write an organized, cohesive argument essay. By working closely with the Language Arts teacher, Mr. Power also helps to strengthen the students’ use of figurative language, comma rules, vocabulary and varied sentence structure.

Mr. Power’s caring, professional demeanor makes it easy for students to talk to him when an adult needs to be aware of a situation in school or at home.  He is a team-player and always willing to get pied in the face when raising money for various causes.

Outside of school, Mr. Power coaches football, winter track, and spring track.  He has also volunteers with local organizations, and last year, Mr. Power was a “buddy” at a Night to Shine, helping guests with disabilities have a “prom” night they would never forget.

Mr. Power gives his all in everything he does, making him a Teacher who Rocks!

Pre-School – 4th Grade Special Education/Guidance Counselor at Wayside Elementary School
Nominated by: Amy Steckhahn, Colleague

Kristen McHugh is a beloved colleague and friend to so many. The families of Wayside Elementary cherish the relationships they have with her.

Kristen always puts the needs of students first. Recently she was able to secure generous donations to purchase and design a sensory path in the hallway. This path provides opportunities for brain breaks through sensory play, further development of gross motor skills, as well as learning to maintain and improve spatial awareness. Coincidentally, this path runs along the route to a special room in our school. Kristen had the idea to re-purpose an unused space for students with sensory needs and diets. Inside, you can find dimmed lighting, multi-sensory toys and activities, soft padding, and a quiet, private area to reflect and de-stress. Many students use this space daily and the reinforcement it provides is wonderful for them.

Last spring, Kristen received an amazing honor from NBC. They had a contest seeking individuals that are simply committed to spreading kindness in their daily lives. Mrs. McHugh came up with a project that started small, but ended up making its way around the world! “Kindness Through Compliments” was created by her to send positive messages to anyone who needed them. As people began forwarding the project along, it eventually spread to many countries all around the world. NBC was so impressed with her initiative that Kristen was named a “Kindness Ambassador.”

Now in addition to “Kindness Ambassador,” Kristen McHugh also gets the well-deserved title title of “Teacher Who Rocks.”

8th Grade Social Studies Teacher at Lacey Township Middle School
Nominated by: Kathleen Cafiero, Teacher

FDR said, “The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much, it is whether we provide enough for those who have little.” This quote sums up Mr. Nick Madensky. He makes sure all that walk through his doors leave with the abundance of knowledge he can instill in them!

Nick is calm, cool and respectful to all his students. He sees them as fun kids who underneath it all truly want to learn. He welcomes them each day and sets goals for all of them. Nick knows that in 8th grade these students are trying to find their way, trying to make decisions that will set the course for the next four years. He offers them advice, but never minimizes their opinions.

The students know that Nick loves Star Wars, Disney, and Hamilton and they love it when those topics infiltrate his Social Studies lessons. He is one of the teachers who may stay behind the scenes, but you know he is there ready and willing to help all!

Nick has been the head baseball coach for the past 12 years with 3 championship titles, he’s a student council advisor, as well as a cooperating teacher for new educators in Lacey.

Mr. Madensky also strives to make change in our education system. He has presented at the NJ Council for Social Studies and assisted in revising Social Studies Standards in NJ. Nick is also on the Advisory Board for Stockton University and assists in the Department Of Education for reviewing student teacher portfolios for the State of NJ.

For all of these reasons and more we honor Nick Madensky as a Teacher Who Rocks!

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