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Missouri Association of Rural Education



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2002 Outstanding Rural Secondary Teacher

Juanita Peaslee

is currently the secondary science instructor with the Crest Ridge R-VII School District in Centerview, Missouri.  For the past 38 years, Mrs. Peaslee has practiced her craft of nourishing the education of children.  Always the first to arrive and often the last to leave.  Mrs. Peaslee began her teaching career as a sixth grade instructor then seventh and eighth grade instructor, later moving to the secondary level in science education.

In the classroom, Mrs. Peaslee is a dynamic teacher.  In her classroom, science comes to life.  She actively engages all her students and teaches in a way that enables them to remember the lesson and to respect science.  For example, students eagerly come to school at 6:02 a.m.  on October 23 each year to celebrate "mole day" (a scientific unit of measure equal to 6.02 x 1023.  Students learn the interesting facts about insects as parents, grandparents, uncles, aunts, brothers and sisters help collect for the annual insect displays.  Additionally every student in the district knows that if they stomp a spider rather than catching and releasing it in a safe place, they will have to contend with the wrath of Mrs. Peaslee!  Her famous corn project is demonstrated to the sophomores and a prize is awarded to the best "farmer".

Her passion for the outdoors has driven her to create an outdoor classroom, which is a favorite activity of her students.  Juniors and Seniors enjoy the experience of wading in the school's pond to collect water samples and specimens.

Mrs. Peaslee's welcomes new challenges.  Last year she accepted the challenge to teach a physiology class via interactive television.  As a result, students from three separate school districts received quality instruction in an upper level science course that would have otherwise not been available.  This year, she agreed to teach Botany and Zoology over the ITV Network.

Mrs. Peaslee's serves on many committees in the School District.  She is always eager to share her experience with new, aspiring educators.  When the district added a Professional Development School to assist college students entering the field of education, Mrs. Peaslee was the first to volunteer to supervise a student.

Mrs. Peaslee's dedication and love for science, her desire for excellence, and her ability to teach the values of life is un-paralleled.