Meet the Best of the Best - Teacher and Staff Member of the Year!
Ms. Gunderson climbs pinnacle at New Jack City, Sawtooth Canyon, Barstow
Angelica Gunderson is on top of the world! Voted by her peers, Teacher of the Year, an honor long overdue. I visited her sixth block, already in progress. The students are watching a video about outer space and taking notes. Ms. Gunderson explains that they are practicing an AVID strategy. They take notes in the form of a t-chart in their science journals, headed “What I See/What I Hear.” She stops the video periodically to explain some of the key points and connect to prior knowledge, and the students take more notes. The students will be allowed to use their journals during their tests, so they are motivated to record everything. This type of engaging instruction is PBIS at its best. The list of her adjunct duties is quite impressive:
Botball Coach and Facilitator
District Science Common Core Curriculum Team
Dual Immersion Team
Project Lead the Way Teacher and Master Teacher
Online Core Training Teacher for Project Lead the Way
Part Time Lecturer at California State University of Long Beach
e-Communications Team for the California Science Teachers Association
K-2 Lesson Writer for Head Start on Science
Regarding her commitment to PBIS, Angelica states, "PBIS is the cornerstone for my collaborative environment. We started off the year identifying characteristics we look for when we work in teams. We also identified possible solutions to problems that arise from working in groups. Students described, discussed, and recorded positive actions that need to take place in order to work on teams effectively. They compared how those actions are all aligned to the six Ps. As a teacher, I am aware that I need to explicitly teach and coach students on soft skills such as communication and organization in order to make them successful in all classes, not just mine. "In addition, I have personally learned so much as I have read and modeled the work that has been published on our PBIS website. My goal is to exhibit the behaviors I expect students to have with other students as well as with all adults in their lives."
In her spare time, Angelica and her husband are avid hikers and have even introduced their two young toddlers to the sport. She has climbed to the top of the pinnacle, but with her relentless hard work, we can expect her to reach much higher goals in education. We thank you for your service, Ms. Gunderson.
Jeremias Mendes, our classified Employee of the year, epitomizes the Lobo character traits, the 6P's. Read the following tributes and you'll see.
"Jeremias has worked for the district for about 28 years. He was a substitute custodian prior to being hired as the custodian at Lampton Middle School, and then at Los Alisos. He is a hard worker that comes to work at least an hour before his scheduled time to make sure the school is clean prior to the students' arrival. When asked to do something he has a saying, “Same check,” meaning it doesn’t matter what job he does, the pay's the same." - Mary Grace, Secretary LAMS
"Jeremias is the hardest working man I have ever seen. He is dedicated to keep Los Alisos clean and has established a great relationship with our staff members. He is always willing to go above and beyond to make sure that our students have a safe and clean environment." -Mike Garcia, Principal, LAMS
"I have known Jeremias for 17 years. When I was a first-year teacher at Los Alisos he always made me feel welcome. He went out of his way to bring me Diet Cokes and even helped me buy a refrigerator to use for science class. I will miss him as a custodian but more importantly as a friend. When I found out he planned to retire, he said he didn't want to because LAMS is his school, and his pride for his school is truly amazing. Congratulations for being Classified Employee of the Year." - Paula Mayes, Assistant Principal.