Two Eiland Elementary Educators Win Inaugural Collaboration Award
Eiland Elementary Librarian Jessica Scheller and Art Teacher Andrea Ramirez were honored for their joint work supporting student vocabulary development.
The pair’s efforts aimed to close the word gap, or vocabulary deficit, which affects English language learners. Of Eiland’s student population, 59 percent are English language learners.
“It means the world to share this experience with Andrea. She’s a remarkable teacher. We are firm believers in learning through visual arts,” said Jessica Scheller, Eiland Elementary Librarian. “That the award is offered by School Library Journal and TLC speaks volumes to the impact school libraries have on student achievement, and I am grateful to share a recognition that highlights visual art education as well.”
For the past several years—with last year’s hybrid learning being no exception—Scheller and Ramirez have created lessons that integrate library services, such as information literacy and access to information, and language development, with creative outcomes and products.
“It is always an honor to collaborate with Jessica in finding innovative projects to promote learning and experiences for our students. It is something I look forward to doing every year, said Andrea Ramirez, Eiland Elementary Art Teacher. “Students that have been at our school for a few years are always excitedly waiting for our next collaborative project.”
In one project, Scheller and Ramirez led a study of stained glass and how it can convey information and narratives, enabling students to explore the scientific process. Children created stained glass and displayed them in the library for all grades to view, analyze, and discuss using watercolor and markers.
“During these ever-changing times of “shifting” and “pivoting,” Mrs. Scheller and Ms. Ramirez remained steadfast in their partnership and pursuit of engaging students in meaningful and relevant ways using literacy and art,” said David Menendez, Eiland Elementary Principal. “Our Eiland Family celebrates their achievement and is proud they are being recognized for their work, collaboration, and most importantly, their positive impact in our student’s learning and overall school experience.”
Children coded geometric shapes with Spheros, studied and created wordless stories, and explored computer science and art, among other learning experiences led by Scheller and Ramirez, some engaging whole classes and others, the whole school, all toward supporting student engagement, closing gaps, and helping address campus, district, and state goals.
“Congratulations to the winners! You have truly shown yourselves to be leaders in the industry, and your achievements have not gone unnoticed,” said Annette H. Murphy, CEO/president, TLC.
Launched in 2021 by SLJ with support from TLC, the Librarian/Teacher Collaboration Award honors a pair of K–12 educators—a library professional and a teacher—for stellar achievement in engaging students toward fostering curious, lifetime learners.
“As exemplified by our honorees, great things can happen when we work together,” said Kathy Ishizuka, SLJ editor in chief. “SLJ is pleased to recognize the creative efforts of this year’s winners of the Librarian/Teacher Collaboration Award. Your inspiration is a welcome example.”
For more information, visit slj.com/collaborationaward.
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