Archived — Donna Neilson

Year: 2003 – Province: British Columbia

Certificate of Excellence Recipients

School: Rockridge Secondary School
5350 Headland Drive
West Vancouver, British Columbia V7W 3H2

Principal: Thomas Longridge
School Telephone: 604-981-1300
School Fax: 604-981-1301
School website:
Teacher Email:
Grades/Subjects Taught: Grades 9, 11-12 / mathematics, English

Teaching approach:

All children want to learn and be the best they can be.

Teachers must take ownership of, and responsibility for, moving students to higher levels of achievement.

Students respond positively to structured and collaborative learning strategies.

Outstanding achievements:

Mrs. Neilson uses innovative teaching practices in the classroom to help students be more creative, independent and curious. A firm believer in giving students the tools to excel, Mrs. Neilson was instrumental in bringing new provincial writing and reading performance standards to the school and District. Her leadership in this area is now inspiring other schools to adopt these standards.

She also encourages team planning for each grade level, including sharing curriculum materials, and coordinating the planning and administration of assessment materials. She also brings a team approach to the classroom with students cooperating on challenging assignments in order to build self-confidence and improve performance of all.

Always willing to help others, Mrs. Neilson is much sought after as a mentor to new teachers. She shares with them the best of her teaching experience - from connecting with students to best practices on lesson planning, delivery, assessment and evaluation.

In Praise Of:

"Through creativity, direct and honest approach, discussions, insistence on correct, completed assignments, and her readiness to help, she brought her students to know the joy of English while providing them with the tools for correct expression." - Parent

"The greatest thing a teacher can do is teach to the individual rather than generically teaching the entire class. This is precisely what Mrs. Neilson does: she caters to the individual's needs and takes time to help faltering students before they develop a problem." - Student

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