Student Performance Propels Teacher’s Literacy Initiative to New Level
Photo Caption: Kurn Hattin teacher Mary Kay Pfadenhauer engages her students in a group reading exercise. On her right, in the striped shirt, sits exemplary reader Dre-Shawn Charbonneau.
The program, part of a larger Literacy Initiative implemented by Pfadenhauer and the teaching staff, includes intensive instruction for older students who had fallen behind before coming to Kurn Hattin. The class meets daily to study phonics and vocabulary through computer assisted technology and classroom instruction. According to Principal Scott Tabachnick, it was Mrs. Pfadenhauer’s passion to advance the organization’s mission to “transform the lives of children and their families forever” that motivated her. “We are so proud of her and the children.
Mrs. Pfadenhauer has been an elementary school teacher for 40 years, but considers the initiative to be a crowning achievement. She has been teaching the youngest children, a combined class of kindergarten through second grade, since 1974. Mrs. Pfadenhauer credits the advancement of the Accelerated Reader program in particular to an exemplary student in her class, top reader, Dre-Shawn Cherbonneau. “Dre elevated us all to a whole new level,” she explains emphatically. “He just loves to read, he can’t get enough of it. This is all because of him.”
“Dre and the other children are so proud of their work,” Mrs. Pfadenhauer notes happily. “They come to class every day with a smile on their faces and ready to learn. I think one of the greatest gifts we have given to these kids is the gift of literacy.”
Established in 1894, Kurn Hattin Homes for Children in