TEACHER OF THE YEAR: Aleah Lick keeps students engaged in learning

Published 8:00 am Friday, January 20, 2023

By Vera Ann Fedell | The Vicksburg Post

This article is part of a series by The Vicksburg Post, in partnership with the Vicksburg-Warren County Chamber of Commerce, featuring each of the nominees for teacher of the year honors.

Aleah Lick, a third-grade Warrenton Elementary School teacher, said that she tries to teach engaging lessons.

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“A lesson that defines me as a teacher is one in which my students are so engaged that they forget they are actually learning,” Lick said. “As a teacher, I believe that it is important I teach my students the importance of learning and for me to teach engaging lessons.”

Lick is a finalist for the Vicksburg-Warren County Chamber of Commerce’s Educator of the Year award. The chamber will select and announce one elementary and one secondary teacher of the year at the chamber luncheon on Feb. 15. The winner of each award will receive $1,000 from Ameristar Casino and the runner-up for each award will receive $500 from Mutual Credit Union. 

Lick received her bachelor’s in elementary education from Delta State University. Then in 2019, Lick began as a teacher’s assistant at Clinton Park in Clinton. Starting in 2021, she started teaching at Warrenton Elementary as a first-grade teacher. Then Lick became a third-grade teacher at Warrenton Elementary in 2022. 

One example of Lick building her student’s engagement is with the help of the school district’s new phonics program.

“The students stay engaged in learning and I have the rapport with my students that they understand mistakes are okay, which keeps them going even when they felt like giving up,” she said.

Lick measures her student’s progress by checking on a data-collecting system for math and reading known as iReady to figure out where improvements are needed.

“All students are going to learn at a different pace or need to be taught in a different way, and I can use these measures to help with their individual needs,” Lick said.

In her classroom, students are taught lessons that connect them to the real world by whatever their interests are.

“I ensure my students are connected to the world around them by bringing their interests into the classroom and using what they like to also help guide teaching specific standards,” she said. “Some of my students play football or cheer, and I have incorporated different reading passages that gear towards their interest and allow them to feel connected with characters.” 

Other lessons that incorporate real-world learning include the guidelines for becoming people of society.

“I teach them good manners in the classroom, as well as in the cafeteria while eating,” she said.