A teaching style that brings literature alive – and is called “awesome” by her students – has earned Bowie teacher Faith Majors the state’s the Christine D. Sarbanes Award.
Peers call Majors’ classroom style unique.
For example, she had her The main character of sounds crazy as he explains a murder he committed, but in Bowie teacher Faith Majors’ eighth-grade English Language Arts students hold a trial to prove whether the narrator in Edgar Allen Poe’s “A Tell-Tale Heart” is a killer or not guilty by reason of insanity, reports Gazette.net.
Majors, 37, of Greenbelt teaches at Samuel Ogle Middle School and was recognized on April 12. The Sarbanes award is given out by the Maryland Humanities Council to teachers who go above and beyond for their students.
She was nominated by her peers because she implements unique teaching methods such as the mock trial orstaging a play when reading Shakespeare.
Majors has been a teacher in Bowie for 13 years.
Her students said the mock trial made them appreciate the depth of Poe’s work and they are looking forward to acting out Shakespeare’s plays.
“We had to really analyze the text and spend days looking at it and formulating our argument,” said Jada-Mercy Ayebae, 13, of Bowie. “I learned a lot.”
“I love reading and writing,” Majors said. “I love when I can have kids that didn’t enjoy it ask me, ‘What are we reading next?’ Because getting them excited about school and excited about reading, which is something that not all younger kids enjoy, is very rewarding.”
The Humanities Council said of Majors: “Ms. Majors extends her work outside of the classroom, helping parents select appropriate materials for their families, planning technology-based interventions for struggling readers, and creating home-school incentive plans to support reading at home. She also works with interns from the University of Maryland as a mentor, encouraging the next generation of teachers to take creative approaches to meeting the learning goals of students. She stays in tune with new books and magazines that might interest her students with the help of her teenage son.”