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Painting the bigger picture

Janet Lombardi and her son, Zach, are both Staten Island teachers, who share their passion for activism through art with their elementary school students.

Learning on tap

For his work at Washington Heights Expeditionary Learning School, where he has made water the core area of study this year in his environmental science classes, Jared Fox received a Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Award for Excellence in Teaching Science and Mathematics.

Creating a culture of respect

Anthony Chin Kee Hee, a third-year high school English teacher at the Bronx Latin School, has learned how to become an effective educator by building relationships with his students.

Developing leaders

Wearing jeans, a T-shirt and sneakers — with her hair in a ponytail — math teacher Danielle Tutelian doesn’t look much older than her students at the Bronx HS of Business. That works to her advantage.

‘Signs’ of respect

When Rita Fattorusso invites one of her prekindergarten students to the front of the class to lead morning exercises, the other students pay strict attention. If they don’t, they’ll miss their classmate’s instructions: He uses American Sign Language to tell them to do eight jumping jacks, mimicking the action and counting out the number eight on his fingers.

Giving it the max

When Johanna Pontillo makes her once-a-month trips to Atlantic City, she always “bets the max” on the casino poker machines.

Your art journey begins here

"Your art journey begins here.”

That message from Amie Robinson to her students is posted on her classroom door. And for many of those students, that journey has taken their artwork from the classroom at PS 77, a District 75 school in Park Slope, Brooklyn, to the walls of the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Museum of Modern Art in Manhattan, the Brooklyn Museum and the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C.

Starting young

For Jo Ann Westhall, an elementary school education includes reading, writing, arithmetic — and computer science. Westhall, a computer science teacher and the chapter leader at PS 31 in Bayside, Queens, brought a subject reserved for middle and high school students to children as young as 4 years old.

A visionary

Nicole Feliciano, a teacher and chapter leader at West Preparatory Academy on Manhattan’s Upper West Side, 
is the recipient of a 2019 Big Apple Award for helping students get much-needed eye exams and prescription eyeglasses.

‘I wanted to be like her’

Yadira Hans is a 4th-grade teacher at PS 249 in Flatbush, Brooklyn, and one of this year's Big Apple Award winners. PS 131 teacher Anita Betances, who taught Hans third grade, set her on her path.