Sarah Hann named Greenbrier County Teacher of the Year

Music educator Sarah Hann has earned distinction as Greenbrier County Teacher of the Year.

Greenbrier County Schools is pleased to announce that Music educator and percussionist Sarah Hann has been selected as the Greenbrier County Teacher of the Year. Ms. Hann teaches Music to students in grades K-5 at White Sulphur Springs Elementary School.

Hann was selected from a pool of Teacher of the Year candidates from schools across the county who were nominated and interviewed by a selection committee. She will advance for West Virginia Teacher of the Year consideration.  A committee appointed by the State Superintendent evaluates all county nominees and interviews a select group of finalists before naming the 2018-19 West Virginia Teacher of the Year.

“I am incredibly honored to have been selected as Teacher of the Year for Greenbrier County.  I know that many of my colleagues are just as deserving, and it is a privilege to work daily among such inspiring teachers. In addition, I work with the most kind-hearted and enthusiastic students who make my job a true joy.  Each day I purpose to find the small moments of gratitude, and because of these students and school, this is an easy task.  Thank you for this recognition and distinction, it means a great deal to me,” states Hann.

After earning a B.A. in Music Education from Indiana University in 2011, Hann attended Winthrop University where she earned a Master of Music Performance.

“Greenbrier County Schools is excited to have this opportunity to applaud the passion, commitment, and creativity that Sarah Hann brings to her Music classroom each and every school day.  She is an outstanding educator and musician who also serves as a remarkable inspiration to her students,” states Superintendent Bryant.

In her application, Hann notes that her teaching is grounded in the belief that, “if students have the confidence to seek knowledge, then they are much more likely to do so rather than waiting for that knowledge to be handed to them.” She continues, “When students discover that knowledge on their own, it is theirs to hold and to keep. I believe music education in particular creates the perfect atmosphere for this student-led discovery and independent thought.  Each time a student sings or plays a piece of music, they must make choices on how they will interpret that music: choices in dynamics, choices in style, and choices in expression. Creativity in itself is a form of courage. To be creative one must be vulnerable, and to be vulnerable takes courage. As students grow in confidence, they become more assured of their ability to think and discover on their own. This leads to a sense of independence and then onto curiosity. And when you take a curious student who has the courage to independently seek knowledge, you have a self-motivated learner ready to succeed.”

“Ms. Hann is an amazing teacher whose classroom management and teaching methods are centered on encouraging students to be creative and confident as they discover the world of music.  The staff and students at WSSE love her and believe that she is the best teacher in West Virginia!” states White Sulphur Springs Elementary Principal, Ann Smith.