Ms. Ballew — an inspiring teacher at Leesville

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Photo of Mrs. Ballew in front of her class board during her first period, Macroeconomics. (Photo courtesy of Davis Dutton).

Background: 

Mrs. Ballew grew up in a small town located near the NC mountains and was one of the first of her family to attend college after graduating from Mcdowell High School. 

“I grew up in Marian, North Carolina which is right outside of Asheville so near the mountains. It’s a small town that consists of only one high school in the county and all of my family lives there still so we go back and visit. Also I was the first person in my family to go to college and move away,” said Ballew.

Path to teaching:

During her time in high school her most memorable part was her focus and attention towards student government and even ran for student body president of her class.

“I did a lot of student government stuff and also ran against my husband for student body president, that was my most memorable moment,” said Ballew.

Continuing her path to becoming a teacher she attended the University of North Carolina along with majoring in political science and history to pursue her dream of becoming a teacher.

“I majored in political science and history at UNC and always knew I wanted to be a teacher but for a while I thought that I was going to be a lawyer. I then looked at the MAT program which is where you graduate with your degree, and then it’s a one year program if you get your masters degree and do your student teaching then. So I decided that would be a good option for me, follow that path and have been teaching since,” said Ballew.

Current Teaching:

After graduating from UNC, she and her family moved within the Raleigh area and soon found a teaching position within the social studies department here at Leesville Road High School. She quickly accepted to follow her passion for teaching.

“I wanted to come teach at Leesville because my family moved to Raleigh and I heard great things about the school and was really excited when I was offered a job to come and teach here,” said Ballew.

Overall, Mrs. Ballew loves to be able to educate her students in fun ways and spread her knowledge to students in hopes to help them succeed within school but also within the next stages of students’ lives.

“I love the content that I get to teach and I love that I get to share it with students everyday, and I think social studies is so important and it teaches you about life. I just really love the things I get to talk about and I think it’s fun because everyday is different, I get to make new connections and to see yall grow up and do amazing things,” said Ballew.

Student View: 

Many if not most of Mrs.Ballew’s students who have had her as a teacher enjoy her teaching styles and her desire to focus on individuals to help them be as successful as they can.

Tucker Wood, junior, is one of Mrs.Ballew’s former Civic and Literacy students who enjoyed having her as a teacher and loves her style of teaching.

“Overall I liked her teaching style because all of the class curriculum was taught digitally which made it easier to find and keep up with upcoming assignments. What made her so different from some of the other teachers I’ve had in the past is that she focuses on each individual student and helps them to understand material that is challenging in order to be successful,” said Wood.

Ryan Huffman, junior, is one of Mrs.Ballew’s former students and loved her way of teaching. Having her as a teacher has helped him understand and succeed within the classroom.

“She was always engaging with me and other students, making learning easy and fun. What stood out most to me about her as a teacher was the fact that she cared about her students rather the work she was assigning and making sure we as a class understood what was being taught,” said Huffman.

“She  and her teaching style have been important to my learning. Taking her class has helped me with history in general because I didn’t like the subject but she found ways to make me engaged while still having fun,” said Huffman.

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