System-Wide Teacher of the Year: Larry Lane
Larry Lane, physical education teacher, is the Athens City Schools System-Wide Teacher of the Year for 2012 – 2013.
Lane began his teaching career at City Park more than 30 years ago and during that time he has received many awards, including City Park Teacher of the Year in 1987 and 2001, Athens City Schools K-4 Teacher of the Year in 2001, the 2009 Optimist Club of Athens Achievement in Education Award, and in 1996 City Park School was named a Tennessee Department of Education State Physical Education Demonstration School.
“Larry is well respected for both his diligence and positive attitude,” said Kristine Walden, principal at City Park School. “His ability to connect with all students allows him to be highly effective as a teacher. He understands the importance of physical education and holds high expectations for all students. Larry genuinely cares for his students and makes their overall physical well-being his number one priority.
Lane is equally complimentary of his colleagues and workplace.
“City Park is a great place work! We have teachers and staff who care deeply for our students and invest their lives making sure our children learn and develop into outstanding young people. I consider the faculty and staff at City Park a part of my family and it has been a great pleasure sharing in their lives all these many years.”
Below, Lane explains in his own words his excitement for teaching and leading his students.
Why did you choose teaching as your profession?
My decision to become a teacher was based on several factors. First, I felt that it was a calling from God that I spend my career working with youth. The circumstances that enabled me to become a first-generation college student in my family were more than coincidence. I had several wonderful teachers and coaches in elementary and high school who encouraged me to pursue teaching. As a result, I have had an extremely satisfying career that revolved around fitness, sports and youth.
Is there someone who serves as a role model for you as a teacher?
The classroom teachers have always been my role models! These folks are truly in the trenches of education as they work to make sure students can read, use math skills and negotiate everything else placed on their plates. I have seen this first-hand as my wife, a classroom teacher, spends countless hours working after school to provide the very best education possible to her students. The classroom teacher has always been an inspiration during my career.
What do you believe to be the most important thing you teach your students?
Love life and be happy! Many of our children have tremendously difficult circumstances in their young lives today. We try to celebrate the things that give children confidence and promote enthusiasm on a daily basis at City Park. Learning to skip, jump rope, shoot a basketball, etc., are all reason enough for great joy!
What is your goal for your students?
It is my passion to accept children with all their strengths and weaknesses and then strive to help them develop their strengths fully and remediate their weakness. I want to instill in my students a lifelong love for movement and a desire to maintain a healthy lifestyle. I believe that when children learn to move, they learn through movement, thus developing the psychomotor, cognitive, and affective competencies in their life.
What do you hope is in the future of the Athens City Schools?
Athens City Schools are committed to developing students to the fullest of their potential. We have a great heritage of teachers and staff who go above and beyond the call for every student who passes through our doors. With the great partnerships of parents and community we have, I am confident the Athens City Schools will continue to be a system that other communities want to use as a blueprint for their education system.