Thursday, December 10, 2015

Houston Texan Surprises Math Teacher

Houston Texans wide receiver Cecil Shorts surprised Spring Woods Middle math teacher Melissa Vallery on Dec. 1 by choosing her student-submitted nomination for public recognition as a “Star in the Classroom.”

The Stars in the Classroom recognition program is supported by both the Texans and First Community Credit Union. As a winning educator, Ms. Vallery earned a signed Brian Cushing jersey, two Texans Version Club home game tickets, and a $500 donation to Spring Branch ISD and her campus.

Shorts, a highly rated wide receiver, visited with Ms. Vallery and her students. He posed for photographs during his morning visit to the middle school, too. Both the credit union and Texans are SBISD Good Neighbors.

Sixth-grader Abigail Brown submitted the winning entry. Abigail was as stunned as her teacher to learn that her nomination was chosen. “It was a really big day. I had no idea that the words I wrote could win. Mine was one of 200 nominations, and I did not think it would win,” she said.

In her nomination, Abigail praised Ms. Vallery for helping her with a subject she sometimes struggles with. “When we divide fractions, she will give me different strategies to get the correct answer. I do feel less afraid about math because she’s there for me,” said Abigail, who hopes to become a veterinarian.

Melissa Vallery has now taught sixth-grade math at Spring Woods Middle School for four years. A Humble native, she worked in daycare in high school and during college years before earning her bachelor of science degree from the University of Houston.

“What I love about teaching is being able to spend my day working with kids,” she said. “Working with children has always been my passion, and being able to help a student understand something they were struggling with, or making a student smile when they are having a rough day, makes it all worth it!”
Earlier this fall, wide receiver Shorts surprised Meadow Wood Elementary teacher Elise Cooper with a similar “Star in the Classroom” award.

Go Texans, and go First Community Credit Union!

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