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Local teacher aims to emphasize all types of learning

The goal is to show kids that they are talented and should be proud of what they are good at (Abigail Taylor, KBOI)

One local teacher is on a mission to make sure that no student in her class ever feels like they are not talented!

Mindy Parker, a first grade teacher at Hunter Elementary in Meridian, said "school doesn't give every kid the chance to shine. But, they all need that. It would be really rough to go 13 years feeling like you're not good at anything."

So, she came up with a new way to build her students' confidence.

What I am trying to get the kids to see is that they are smart. Every child is smart and they are good at something. So, we try to build a community of helping each other and recognizing each other's strengths.

Through the help of several grants, Mindy was able to put together what she calls a 'Makers Space'. It's a corner in her classroom that is filled to the brim with crafts, activities, and games that motivate students to learn in different ways.

The concept is based off of the Theory of Multiple Intelligences, which emphasizes several types of knowledge.

The goal is to show kids that they are talented and should be proud of what they are good at. But, also that if they aren't naturally good at something that's okay too because practice makes perfect.

"Kids do a great job of telling us what they like and what they don't like," said Mindy. "I think [we] need to expose them to a lot but really listen to what they love. The thing is we don't even know what we are developing these kids for or the careers they will go into. So, I would just say give them a chance to find their passion and to figure out what they're good at and what they want to do."

Since initiating this teaching style earlier this year, Mindy says she has already seen a change in her students. She says they are more willing to ask questions and try new things than ever before.

Mindy says this was all made possible through grants from CapEd, Micron, West Ada Education Foundation and Beniton Construction.

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