Teacher of the Month: Carissa Gibbons, Saint James School

Huntington RRP DigitalFull Jan

In 2017, Carissa Gibbons toured Saint James School in an effort to secure the best education for her son, Jacob. Immediately, she connected to the spirit and excellence of Saint James. Inevitably, it also chooses her.

She shares, “I remember touring the Elementary Science Lab and thinking, Wow, this is like none other! What a uniquely wonderful learning space. Jacob will love this!” In 2020, a position for an Elementary Science Lab teacher became available, and she graciously accepted the opportunity. Ms. Gibbons became part of an institution enriching the lives of elementary students with science fun that supports each teacher in the classroom while enhancing students’ love for science.

Ms. Gibbons graduated from UAB with a BS in Elementary Education. She sees it as an honor to hold the title of Elementary Science Lab Enrichment Teacher for Preschool (K3) through 5th grade. As a science lab teacher in the enrichment program, she provides age-appropriate learning opportunities that build on each grade level science objectives. Her classes dig deeper into topics through experiments, projects, activities, and STEM challenges. Saint James affords her all the materials needed to conduct material-based, hands-on lessons with each grade level.

Like many successful educators, Ms. Gibbons embraces her teaching goals for herself and her students. Her main goal each day is to make learning fun! When fun is a factor, students flourish. Making edible plant and animal cells is fun. Watching the life cycle of mealworms changing into beetles while learning about the band The Beatles is fun.

Investigating the characteristics of reptiles while holding a real bearded dragon or spotted leopard gecko is fun. When these memorable events occur in the lab, it excites learning and places a value on it, which extends for a lifetime.

After teaching, Ms. Gibbons would love to travel and read more. She has a long list of books and destinations she hopes to experience one day. She also looks forward to having more time to volunteer at her church.

Carissa Gibbons has one son, Jacob Ashton Gibbons, a sophomore at Saint James who enjoys playing soccer and serving at church. They also have a fur baby, Jax Alexander. Ms. Gibbons has lived in Montgomery for over 20 years.


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