Leah McAlister teaches 7th and 8th grade at Redland Middle School. She graduated from Auburn University in Montgomery in 2014 with a Bachelor’s in Childhood Education. She has completed her Middle School Math Praxis and a National STEM certification, which qualifies her as a TEAMS teacher in Alabama.
For a decade, Mrs. McAlister has made an effort to make learning exciting and fun! She spent the last nine years of her teaching career in Milbrook. In 2020, she moved to the Redland area. McAlister says, “I wanted to be an integral part of my community, and the school opening last year afforded me that opportunity.”
Teaching her age group is very rewarding.
“I think people often stray away from middle school because it’s difficult for many children to navigate life changes around this age. But that’s when they need love and support. They’re old enough to have some independence, but they still want to make you proud whether they will admit it or not.”
Her goal is to prepare kids for the future in more ways than one and to teach them the content they need to become successful in her class and life. She understands that teachers spend more time with the children during the school year than their parents. Therefore, she takes advantage of teachable moments that help build their character.
Like many passionate educators, McAlister establishes teaching goals throughout the year. “As a teacher, I love seeing an ‘ah-ha!’ moment with each child. I love the look on their faces when they’ve been struggling through a topic, and it finally clicks,” she shares. Additionally, she strives to make every student feel like they’re in a safe place in her classroom. Mrs. McAlister passionately shares, “It is safe to make mistakes. It is safe to be yourself, and it’s safe to express how you feel.”
Lastly, Mrs. McAlister wants to leave a lasting impression. She wants her students to remember the fun times shared in her classroom and relate them to learning throughout life.
Leah McAlister is married to Paige McAlister. She was born in Mobile but moved to Prattville at two years old and graduated from the Prattville Public School system.