The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Globe Life

May 6, 2013

Wheaton teacher awarded state History Day honor

WHEATON, Mo. — The dust has barely settled on this year's History Day competition, which wrapped up at the state level last month, but Jason Navarro and his students are already gearing up for next year's contest.

With that kind of enthusiasm, it might come as no surprise that Navarro, who teaches American and world history at Wheaton High School, has been named Teacher of the Year for the state of Missouri through the National History Day competition, which he sponsors for students at his school.

"It's very exciting and surprising," Navarro said, "because I know a lot of good people were up for that (award)."

The Patricia Behring Teacher of the Year Award recognizes outstanding National History Day teachers. Two state winners, one each at the junior and senior levels, are selected from each state, the District of Columbia, Defense Department schools and U.S. territories. The winners of the national award will be selected from among the state winners, who each will be awarded $500.

Winners are selected based on "development and use of creative teaching methods that interest students in history and help them make exciting discoveries about the past" and "exemplary commitment to helping students develop their interest in history and recognize their achievements," according to the History Day organization.

Navarro was nominated for the award by Paul Teverow, a professor of British and European history at Missouri Southern State University and coordinator of the regional History Day competition.

"I haven't seen his teaching, but I see the results of that," Teverow said. "I see that he has students get involved in History Day, and (they are) students from a variety of backgrounds who do this all as an extracurricular activity, and the fact that he inspires them to do this obviously reflects well on his talents as a teacher."

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