Education is a dynamic and challenging profession. As an educator, I appreciate praise and recognition from my students, parents, colleagues, and school community. There are rare, amazing moments when a teacher is recognized outside of her school community. To me, the Presidential Award is a representation of my efforts to provide my students with quality instruction that encourages them to think critically and grow into productive, successful citizens.

Kendra Pullen Shreveport, LA | K-6, Science, 2008

Kendra Pullen has taught fourth grade science at Riverside Elementary School in Caddo Parish since 2005. In addition to her current teaching assignment at Riverside Elementary School, she taught a summer school session of fourth grade mathematics in 2005 at Lakeshore Elementary School and regular terms from 2000 to 2005 at Herndon Magnet School in Belcher, LA, where she also taught third grade mathematics from 1998 to 2000. Respected for her teaching techniques, Ms. Pullen is constantly improving herself as a teacher by attending professional development workshops and implementing the strategies she learns in her classroom. She incorporates distance learning, thinking maps, four square writing, and cooperative learning activities to promote critical thinking and a positive atmosphere. She also incorporates hands-on activities and labs to engage her students and maintains contact with parents via e-mail and a weekly newsletter. Ms. Pullen's enthusiasm for teaching is also reflected in what she does outside the classroom to ensure the quality education of all students. She has served on numerous committees (such as the Louisiana Science Standards and Benchmarks Committee), presented at numerous workshops and conferences, and served on the committee to enhance the comprehensive curriculum. Her competency as key organizer of the Riverside Elementary Science Fair is so respected that Ms. Pullen has been invited to present at the district level to all Science Fair Coordinators, sharing her timeline of activities and checkpoints to keep the process on track. Ms. Pullen has received numerous awards and grants, including the Wal-Mart Local Teacher of the Year award in 2007, Caddo Parish Teacher of the Year in 2006, and Quality in Science and Math grant in 2006. Ms. Pullen has a B.A. in elementary education from Northwestern State University and an M.Ed. in educational leadership from Louisiana State University in Shreveport. She is certified in elementary education by the Louisiana Department of Education and is certified as a Teacher Leader by the State of Louisiana.