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By Jesef Williams

When Robyn Blackmon was a young child, she’d line up her teddy bears and dolls and teach them what she’d learned in school that day.

It was during those early years that the Great Falls native knew she wanted to be an educator.

Fast forward to 2009, and now she’s being recognized for being one of the best in the profession in Lancaster County.

Blackmon, a kindergarten teacher at North Elementary School, is the year’s Celebrate Great Teaching winner for the elementary level in the Lancaster County School District.

The district hands out four of the awards each year – one at each of three school levels and one for a first-year teacher.  

“I was very glad she won the award,” said Barbara Mullis, a North Elementary volunteer whose son, Nathan, was in Blackmon’s class last year. “It doesn’t surprise me.”

This is Blackmon’s 18th year in education. She had most previously been at Buford Elementary School and is now in her eighth year at North Elementary.

Blackmon has a deep passion for teaching. Her eyes light up at the mere mentioning of educating children.

She realizes she is many of her students’ first teacher and wants to set a tone where each child views school as fun, not a tedious job.

Her goal is for all her students to grow to their fullest potential.

“The children come in and they’re so eager to learn,” Blackmon said. “It’s amazing to see the growth that can happen from August to May in a child’s educational journey.”

On Wednesday, Blackmon guided her kindergarten class through an activity where they identified shapes, colors and sizes using block shapes.

During that lesson, she taught the definition of “attribute” and challenged the class to pay attention to identifying characteristics in people and things.

Principal Linda Blackwell said Blackmon is a team player who works well with fellow faculty and is always caring and fun-loving toward her students.

Blackmon is an excellent teacher, she said.

“Students enjoy being in her class because she incorporates a lot of movement and dance into her lessons,” Blackwell said. “She shows what an exceptional reading teacher she is by modeling daily the love of reading.”

Blackmon admits that many days are tough, but she wouldn’t want it any other way.

“It’s so rewarding to work in this job,” she said. “I do love it. In the end, it’s the best thing for me.”

Contact reporter Jesef Williams at jwilliams@thelancasternews.com or at (803) 283-1152