Washington State's Teacher of the Year 2015 Lyon Terry

Congratulations Washington State's Teacher of the Year: Lyon Terry of Lawton Elementary!
Posted on 09/22/2014

Lyon Terry, a 4th grade teacher at Lawton Elementary, was today named Washington State's Teacher of the Year. The announcement was made by State Superintendent Randy Dorn at a celebration at EMP that included Terry and eight fellow regional award winners.

“What makes Lyon and all the 2015 Teachers of the Year stand out is that they see the big picture of education,” Superintendent Dorn said. “They understand that great teachers and schools teach to the heads, hands and hearts of their students. Students must meet academic standards. But they also need to learn how to make things, serve their community, persevere through difficulty and treat others with kindness. Our Teachers of the Year understand that. And it’s why we lift them up as examples for all.

Lyon, who has taught at Lawton since 2005, is a National Board Certified Teacher. The Superintendent's Office described him as a teacher who focuses on creating confident, hard-working and compassionate learners. Lyon said he wants his students to learn how to be both kind and smart. Lyon believes that community connections strengthen student learning. He fully immerses himself in the community through scouts, sport programs and various non-profits. These connections enrich his classroom with guest presenters and neighborhood volunteer projects.

When he noticed many of Lawton’s students were riding to school in cars instead of walking, Lyon recruited older students to serve as crossing guards and bus greeters, and organized Seattle’s first walking school bus program.

Lyon has served in numerous leadership roles in his school and district, most often in the areas of writing and literacy, and also as a union representative. He has worked to integrate elements of Writer’s Workshop into Lawton and currently sits on a district committee focused on aligning reading and writing with the Common Core. During his time a Lawton, 4th-grade writing proficiency rates on the state Measurements of Student Progress (MSP) test have risen over 10 percentage points.

Lyon believes teachers are agents of social change because they shape young learners into thoughtful citizens. He knows just the right way to engage students in this learning. “Mr. Terry connects with children, holds them to a high standard of behavior and work ethic, and offers support for them to be successful,” said Former Lawton Principal Neil Gerrans. “His spot-on timing, knowing when to question and probe and when to slow down seems instinctive, but it is honed by his reflective practice.”

Lyon and the eight other Regional Teachers of the Year each received donated cash awards, technology prizes and scholarships for classroom improvements.

Watch Lyon's students sing their congratulations to him in the video below.




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