Feature Friday

Angie Gonzales – 4th Grade Teacher at Liberty Elementary

We have worked with so many phenomenal teachers in Fayette County, and decided to shine a spotlight on them with our Feature Friday! 

This week, we chatted with Angie Gonzales, a 4th grade teacher at Liberty Elementary. She has been teaching for 24 years, 14 of those in Fayette County. However, teaching is something she’s loved for her entire life. Helping students discover how the world works and to get excited about learning is her favorite thing in the world. One of the best things she hears from her students is, “What? Math is already over? How can that be?” When kids are engaged and excited about what they’re learning, the time flies by and they are more likely to retain their knowledge. 

Angie was a recipient of our Teacher Outreach Program, which helps teachers enhance their classrooms with items they would otherwise have to purchase themselves. Angie received wobble stools, Surf desks, a set of books for her read-aloud sessions, and some place value dice. The alternative seating, especially the Surf desks, have really been a hit with the students. They often bring them into the hallway during small groups, and love to show them off to other students walking down the hall. Angie has been reading The Penderwicks to her students for several years, and seeing them get excited about the series has been so fun for her. She requested the second installment in the series as well, which she lends out to the students once they finish the first book in class. The students are so excited to read the next book, and seeing their love of reading flourish is so rewarding. The kids also love the place value dice, which can help liven up what might otherwise be a dry math lesson.

Kids may not always want to get up in the morning, but Angie works hard to ensure that her classroom is a place they want to be. She hopes that when students see her in their everyday life, like at a store, they’ll seek her out to say hi instead of ducking down another aisle to avoid her. She loves seeing past students, especially ones who ask to come back into her classroom for an internship. Sometimes, they’ll ask her, “Remember when we did that with you in 4th grade?” “Of course!” she says. Those memories are her biggest reward for teaching.

Helping kids get excited about learning is a tough but important job, and luckily teachers like Angie are not only up to the task, but truly enjoy the challenges and rewards that come from teaching. We look forward to bringing more stories like this to you in the future, so we can share our appreciation of the hardworking teachers in our community.