Tools For Teachers: Colin Duckworth

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Male teachers are few and far between, especially in elementary schools.  However, this week's Tools For Teachers recipient has taught several age groups.  All of his students and fellow teachers love the enthusiasm he brings to the classroom.

Colin Duckworth used to dabble in computer animation and multimedia.  Now, he's teaching first graders at James W. Williams Elementary in Huntsville.   His teaching philosophy is simply 'Let's have a little fun.'

"I do a little more differently than some teachers, my classroom is not so structured.  We have a little more fun," Duckworth said.

During his first year, he taught fourth grade.  In his second year, he taught special education.  This year, he's tackling first grade.

"Every year he gives 110 percent," said Principal Lee McAllister. "He does everything he can for the kids."

McAllister says watching this young teacher blossom is a treat.

"I saw the kids really show a lot of improvement and in some changes with behavior and also with academics," McAllister said.

That fact caught the attention of Angela Willard.  Her son James was in Mr. Duckworth's fourth grade class.  Willard said what her son experienced that year paved the way for success.

"He has changed the way, to this day, that my oldest son does his homework, studies and pays attention because he went above the extra mile," said Willard.

So, it's time to surprise Mr. Duckworth.

"We have a surprise for you," Principal McAllister says.

"What's going on?" Duckworth replies.

"You have been nominated by Ms. Willard, I am here to present to you your award from Channel 19. $319 dollars," McAllister explains.

"Very good. We can put that to use in here!" Duckworth says.

Students applaud -- and then it's back to the books.

"Is there more water or more land on the earth?" Duckworth asks.  "Water!" the children reply.

If your child gets the opportunity to sit in this classroom, know this.  At the end of the school year he or she will have an edge up. A rising star, if you will -- much like their teacher.

Nominate a local teacher, principal or coach for Tools For Teachers.