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Jordan’s heart-felt efforts rewarded
Teachers with Heart - Jordan.jpg
Teachers with Heart - Sophia Callahan.jpg

Teachers really put their heart and soul into their job and Tracy Jordan has been recognized by the Southern Standard as this year’s Teacher with Heart.

The promotion began Jan. 31 and concluded Feb. 11. Warren County students were asked during the nomination period to submit entries explaining why their teacher deserved the distinction as the Teacher with Heart.

Just in time for Valentine’s Day, Sophia Callahan’s entry nominating second-grade teacher Tracy Jordan, of West Elementary School, was chosen as the winner.

“My teacher Ms. Jordan is the best,” Sophia says in her video entry. “She teaches us a lot of cool things.”

The second-grader takes a particular interest in math and is currently learning regrouping. She credits Jordan with her love for school and enjoys spending lunch periods sitting with her teacher in their classroom.

“I started sitting in with my kids for lunch because you can learn so much in that 15 or 20 minutes about some of the kids and the things that they want to share with you than you can when you’re teaching them all day,” said Jordan, “Sophia sits right beside me at lunch and she is precious. She wants to learn, do well and she does everything with a positive attitude.”

Jordan has been a teacher at West Elementary for 22 years after receiving her master’s degree at Tennessee Tech. She taught third grade for over 13 years before she found herself feeling at home teaching second grade.

“I love my kids and meeting new kids every year,” Jordan said of her favorite part of being a teacher. “The best part is to be able to see a child grow, to see them learn to read and write. There’s something about seeing that twinkle in the children’s eyes when they understand something they didn’t get before.”

The pandemic has thrown many wrenches into the wheels of education but Jordan feels it has enabled her to have a closer bond with her students than in years past. “I’ve been able to have a closer relationship with my students and their families than I have in many years,” she said, “I was able to get to know my students better. I feel like we’re closer together as a group in the classroom this year because we had this opportunity to interact with fewer children at a time.”

It has not been without difficulties, however, and Jordan lamented the growing pains that came with conquering the technological part of learning remotely. “The hardest part was the technology,” she admitted, “We had to learn everything on the computer and only had a few days to learn it. We then had to teach the parents because it was new for them too.”

Though she had received awards for her teaching endeavors, Jordan was surprised to learn she had been nominated and chosen as the Teacher with Heart.

“I was tickled when I found out I won,” said Jordan, “I love my students and I tell them that all the time.” For her recognition, both Tracy Jordan and her student, Sophia Callahan, took home prizes. Among them were gift certificates and product packages from local businesses.