Zest Simmons is an award-winning AP English recognized for how she helps diverse students achieve excellence. In this episode, she tells her story for #LoveTeaching week. Presently, Zest Simmons is an award-winning AP Teacher and Alabama State Teacher of the Year 2019. As can be seen from her story, she tells of the love for teaching that ignites learning. Furthermore, she talks about how she loves the students in her classroom. We can reach every child. Zest talks about how in this special #LoveTeaching week episode.
Listen to Zest Simmons share for #LoveTeaching Week
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Zest Simmons – Bio as Submitted
Inspired to become an educator by her own teachers, Zestlan Simmons, a National Board Certified teacher, was once told by a family friend to “reconsider her options” when she shared her dream. However, for her, the joy of seeing students engaged in mastering writing skills has been the catalyst for pursuing her dream. This love of empowering students with the awareness of their capabilities led her to return to Booker T. Washington (BTW) Magnet. There, she once benefited from an arts education through the Carver Creative and Performing Arts Program (CCPAC), which is now BTW. In her role as an educator at BTW, she contributes to cross-curricular planning initiatives, which encourage art and academic teachers to collaborate on special projects and classroom instruction.
When her school partnered with the National Math and Science Initiative (NMSI) and A+ College Ready, she started teaching Advanced Placement (AP) Language and Composition in 2009. She was recognized by NMSI as the AP English Teacher of the Year for increasing the AP Language exam scores for minority students.
In 2017, she pursued a certification in Instructional Leadership so that she could continue to mentor new teachers. Her greatest joy has been to see her former students become teachers in Montgomery, in Alabama, and in the nation
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