LifeChanger of the Year Nominee Profile

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Jennifer Adkins

Position: Third Grade Teacher
School: Southside Elementary School
School District: Dinwiddie County Public Schools
City, State: Dinwiddie, VA

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Jennifer Adkins was nominated by her principal, Tamara Oliver.

Mrs. Adkins is a third grade teacher at Southside Elementary School in Dinwiddie, Virginia.  She teachers at a Title I school with a diverse population of students.  Mrs. Adkins is the epitome of an exceptional teacher.  She is a STEM (Science , Techology, Engineering, and Math) teacher who inspires her students to actively engage in learning through hands-on activities.  She uses project-based learning strategies (PBLs), which require students to apply what they have learned and work as a team to create a culminating masterpiece.  Mrs. Adkins uses these PBLs to assess her students' understanding of concepts taught. She plans customized lessons based on assessment data and her students' needs. Mrs. Adkins is an inspiration to her school's entire faculty.  She is passionate about teaching students and has been a valuable resource for her colleagues. She teaches at the Math and Science Center during the summer and applies for grants for students who are qualified to attend, but cannot afford it. Mrs. Adkins is an amazing LifeChanger!



Comments (51)


dena traylor Posted over a year ago

Where do I start....Mrs.Adkins has been the answer to our prayers. Our son who has not liked school for the last 3 years is LOVING school this year. He has taught us so much about what he has learned in his class. I look forward to the daily picures of the kids in Mrs. Adkins class doing fun educational activies. I can tell with our son she has made a wonderful educational impact on him and its only the beginning of the school year. Mrs. Adkins is the students advocate in education. With meeting Mrs.Adkins you can tellshe is very PASSIONATE and LOVES her job and the children . She is a true BLESSING. Thank You Derna Traylor

Donna Wicks Posted over a year ago

Jennifer recently joined my church and was baptized. She is a wonderful asset to our church family. She participated in a mission project to assemble non perishable foods for a third world country, she is the facilitator for Wednesday night programming for our children and has contributed in other ways. She is very committed to offer meaningful activities for the children. She has proven to be a great role model and she is a joy to know.

Jennifer Mize Posted over a year ago

Jennifer is a very active member of my church (West End Baptist). She started the SPARK program for the children & they love it & are learning so much.

Amy Jennings Posted over a year ago

Mrs. Adkins was my son's 2nd grade teacher at Walnut Hill Elementary in Petersburg. We knew the first day we met Mrs. Adkins at school orientation, we were going to love her! She has such a warm heart and I knew my son was going to have a wonderful year with her! Mrs. Adkins has a wonderful gift, and that gift is working with children! You can tell just how much she loves and cherishes every moment she has with each of her students. To this day, if my son was able to have one teacher up until his graduation, we would pick Mrs. Adkins.

Juana Hernandez Posted over a year ago

Mrs. Adkins is such a amazing teacher. She cares about her students as her oen kids. She makes sure everyone is on truck with there assessments. She puts all her work and heart to make sure students learn everything. Thank you Mrs. Adkins for being an excellent teacher. You deserve this award!!!

Carolyn Hagee Posted over a year ago

This is an amazing teacher. She cares so much for her kids & school. If something needs to be done at school, she is the 1st to volunteer & makes sure it gets done. They are doing gardens for the kids now to plant & she jumped right in with both feet. Really proud to know her.

Danielle Dickenson Posted over a year ago

Mrs. Adkins is a fantastic teacher she is my daughter's teacher this year. I always enjoy the pictures she post showing parents what our children are learning each day. I especially love all the hands on learning she does with the children. I feel she goes the extra mile keeping us parents informed on any information. We are very blessed to have such a wonderful teacher this year, she definitely deserves this.

Chuck Moss Posted over a year ago

Mrs. Adkins is a fantastic teacher and an innovator at Southside Elementary. She is a lover of children, a creator of learning, and a changer of lives! She sets a bar for her peers and helps them reach it, because that’s what’s best for children.

Cl Hagee Posted over a year ago

She is an amazing teacher & mother. She is so patient with her students. Never heard anything but good things from her kids & their parents. Anyone would be proud to have her teaching at their school.

Whitney Harris Posted over a year ago

Mrs. Adkins is such a caring and thoughtful teacher. I am an achor/reporter at WRIC/8News, the ABC affiliate in Richmond, Virginia and I do a segment about outstanding teachers called Above and Beyond the Classroom. A colleague recommended Mrs. Adkins for the segment and she was perfect! I could tell from my short time in her classroom that she is very passionate about teaching and about helping her students in any way that she can. One thing that stuck with me was when she said that her students are more like her children, even though she has a child of her own. Her students had glowing remarks about their teacher, saying that she made lessons fun and that they could tell she loved them. Her colleagues said that she works hard to find unique lessons and that she shares those lessons with them as well. Here is the link to the story: http://wric.com/2016/12/27/dinwiddie-county-teacher-jennifer-adkins-goes-above-and-beyond-the-classroom/

Ashley Sawyer Posted over a year ago

Mrs Adkins has been my daughters 2nd An 3rd grade teacher. She has been an absolute pleasure, Third grade being very trying for most children she went far beyond expectations to meet the needs of each student! She also instilled greatness in each child including my own! When I am bothered or have a situation that may occur my daughters response is "mom be a problem solver" An the moment I heard those words I respond with where did you get those great words she indeed said "Ms Adkins teaches us to be problem solvers when something is wrong you have to be a problem solver to fix it" so she not only shares her greatness with her kids they share it An pass it along which is what matters most!! Thank you Mrs Adkins An you by far have our vote!!!

Melanie Allen Posted over a year ago

Jennifer is my older sister and if anyone deserves this award it's her. She puts her whole heart into her teaching and it shows. She works so hard for her students. She has such a passion for teaching and loves each of her students as if they were her own. She frequently calls them "her kids" and does her very best to see each child reach their full potential. I'm so proud of her!

Amber Jackson Posted over a year ago

There are "taught teachers" and their are "born teachers", Jennifer is the latter. She is an asset to our school and the profession!

carrie persing Posted over a year ago

Jennifer has been one of my Saturday teachers at the MathScience Innovation Center the past 2 years. I have really enjoyed getting to know her. Not only is she willing to teach just about any class I give her, she engages the students and gets them excited about the topic. Each Saturday she comes on campus ready to inspire kids and help them grow. Teaching is obviously her passion and she puts 100% into it.

Becky Brooks Posted over a year ago

I always enjoy the pictures and comments Jennifer posts showing her students engaged and involved in a STEM lesson. Her endless energy and enthusiasm make me want to be a better teacher!

Amy Cox Posted over a year ago

Jennifer has been my colleague for a few years now. I got the pleasure of working in her room this year. As a reading interventionist at our school its always great to be able to collaborate with like minded people. She takes a vested interest in her children and truly cares about them. Proud of her accomplishments.

Charlotte Cypress Posted over a year ago

Jennifer is an excellent teacher! She is very resourceful, plans thoroughly for her students and holds each of them accountable for their part in their learning process. She is very energetic, loves learning, and hands on projects. She is definitely a wealth of knowledge. She shares with her colleagues and is great at finding supplemental activities for the students and her team. Jennifer always gives 100% and has a sincere desrire to see herself, her students and her team grow. She is a great person to know!

Beth Tetterton Posted over a year ago

Jennifer is an excellent teacher and a wonderful person. It is a pleasure to be her friend and colleague. Everyone - students, parents, and colleagues - is better for having gone in contact with her. She is a pro at using data to drive instruction, her test scores speak for themselves. I have been blessed to know and work with her!

Marseille maxey Posted over a year ago

Mrs. Adkins is an amazing teacher. She goes over and beyond to ensure student success. Mrs. Adkins is a team player that loves to collaborate with her peers.

Zoe Elston Posted over a year ago

I worked with Jennifer for two years at the beginning of her teaching career. She was truly inspiring those years with her thoughtful organization, sincerely compassionate classroom management, meaningful lesson plans, and intentional lesson delivery. When you teach in an area that can easily burn you out, it's easy to recognize a resilient teacher who will rise above and not lose the passion. That was what I saw in Jennifer. Her calling to this profession continues to inspire other teachers and especially the young lives she touches every day.

Kathy Coffin Posted over a year ago

Jennifer was a new, first year teacher on our first grade team when I met her almost 5 years ago. She persevered through some challenging things at the beginning of the year and would not let them discourage her dream of being an effective, passionate teacher. She is amazingly organized and creative! She was definitely a team player who helped every member of our team. Her analytical mind and computer skills were lifesavers at times. Jennifer kept us all on our toes by reminding us of important deadlines for various projects and responsibilities. She is a loving, compassionate, giving, fun-loving person to students and coworkers. Jennifer sets goals for herself and her students and firmly believes that they can be accomplished. She continues to be a life-long learner and is happy to pass that learning on to others. She is able to effectively balance her responsibilities as a wife, mother, and teacher. She is definitely a life changer and, probably, related to Wonder Woman! Her desire to use her God-given gifts and talents to better the lives of children and to serve in so many ways definitely qualify her for this honor.

Monica Sheehan Posted over a year ago

I was Mrs. Adkins mentor teacher her very first year teaching. She is very driven to learn and passes this passion on to her students. She is always undertaking new, inovative projects in order to reach students on all levels and help them learn better.

Bridgette Hurt Posted over a year ago

Mrs. Adkins is a phenomenal teacher! It has been a joy as well as an inspiration to work with her. I believe she truly has a gift for teaching. Mrs. Adkins has a passion for children and teaching. She is extremely caring, and positive. Congratulations Adkins!!

Connie Brisendine Posted over a year ago

Mrs. Adkins is truly a life changer. There are many things that I could say about her bubbling, enthusiastic attitude towards teaching her students, or her excitement in sharing cool ways to integrate technology into the classroom or finding her weeping tears of pure joy because one of her little ones least expected to pass the SOL test did, in fact, do just that. What I really wanted to mention was how she was able to change the attitude of a quiet little person in her classroom who didn't have much to say. I was his resource teacher last year. He was always quiet, thoughtful and carried an unspoken burden. He had trouble with school work but would choose to talk to me about grown-up problems. He just never was very happy. Now, a year later, after being with Mrs. Adkins, I see a much happier little person who has developed self-esteem, believes in himself and knows that he can learn, too. There is a positive demeanor around him these days. I have been quite happy to see the change in this little person's life this past year. Mrs. Adkins has certainly made sure that his educational experience in 3rd grade was life changing.

Lorraine Campbell Posted over a year ago

I am one of Mrs. Adkins' co-workers. I have observed on many occasions the love and attention she gives her students. She is always positive and definitely an asset to Southside Elementary.

Catherine Robbins Posted over a year ago

I met Mrs. Adkins when she was a student teacher at Scott elementary in Chesterfield, I knew she was going to be a wonderful teacher then. Mrs. Adkins always took the time to teach and encourage the students, explain the lesson so everyone would understand, she teaches with hands on lessons so the children also get to experiment more. Hands down she is an inspiration and excels in teaching.

Charlotte Elder Posted over a year ago

Mrs. Adkins has been attending West End Baptist church for a little while and already has made an impact by volunteering for service projects and crafting projects at church. She has made a positive impact on all the people she comes in contact with

Romona White Posted over a year ago

She is one of the best teachers that I have had the pleasure to work with and is more than deserving of this award.

Amy Jennings Posted over a year ago

Mrs. Adkins was my son's 1st grade teacher. She always made him feel accepted! She is an amazing teacher, and if we could have her again, no questions asked, we would! She makes all of her students feel loved and important. I knew when I met her, my son was going to have an amazing year and he did. We were sad to move on bc we knew she wouldn't be his teacher anymore. God has blessed her with an amazing gift to teach students with such a soft/warm heart! I'm so fortunate to have gotten to know Mrs. Adkins and that she was my son's teacher!

Meagan Wall Posted over a year ago

I met Jennifer through my Sunday School class, and a project that she organized for us to repair a collapsed greenhouse at her school, Southside Elementary. The following week, she sent us all pictures of her students planting and using their newly repaired structure for the excellent learning opportunity that it is. I have been very impressed with her drive and initiative. Congratulations, Jennifer!

Amanda Pursley Posted over a year ago

I have known Jennifer since we were in the first grade together. We went all the way through school together. Although, she has not taught any of my children as I don't live in her area, she has been a valuable resource for me as I am a homeschool teacher of a rising second grader and she was a first grade teacher previously. She has provided me with resources to get through the difficult things of teaching a first grader and she's done it all with pleasure and while planning her own teaching lessons for her students. I truly believe that as valuable as she has been to me, that she is that much more to her students, colleagues, and community!

Lataya Idrell Posted over a year ago

Congratulations young lady!

Millie Wright Posted over a year ago

I think that it is wonderful that such a nice young lady has been nominated for this award. I met her through church and she has been involved from the beginning. She and her fellow teachers arranged for her Sunday School class and other church members to repair the green house at the school for the students. She is a wonderful, caring person.

Kathleen Rathien Posted over a year ago

I was blessed to have Mrs. Adkins as a teammate last year, and a coworker this year. She is not only an inspiration to the students that she teaches, but has been an inspiration to me as well. She helped me find my passion for teaching again, and encourages me to do and try things that I want to do, but am afraid to. She's always there with an uplifting smile and words of encouragement for her students and coworkers and always pushes everyone to do their best. I truly feel blessed and lucky to be able to teach with this amazing teacher!

Melissa Bennett Posted over a year ago

Jennifer is caring person and teacher. She love kids and love teaching. Who ever gets her as their teacher is one lucky kid. I wish my kids we're young so they could have her as their teacher. Jennifer is a all around great person.

Patricia Miller Posted over a year ago

Congratulations Jennifer!!! You deserve it and I'm so proud of you!!!

Mark Hughes Posted over a year ago

Jennifer Adkins is a passionate and driven teacher who wants nothing less than the best from her students and is willing to give nothing less than her best to see that happen.

Ginger Clarke Posted over a year ago

Jennifer is very deserving of this nomination. I was her gradelevel chair for a few years and found her advice and input to be very valuable. I am so happy that she is getting the recognition that she deserves!

Luis Torales Mejia Posted over a year ago

Your are the best teaher I love you a lot Miss Adkins

Heather Stewart Posted over a year ago

Very deserving of this award. She is a awesome teacher! We very much enjoyed having her as a teacher.

Melinda Arnold Posted over a year ago

Mrs. Adkins, hands down is one of the best teachers I have ever met. My son who came from another county, has never really enjoyed school. He was an average student just getting by. That changed after he met Mrs. Adkins. She put a drive in him and inspired him to love school and learning. He has come a long way from earning C's to straight A's and even excelling on his SOL's. Not only is Mrs. Adkins a great teacher,but she is also a great person. She honestly loves her students like her own and that makes a parent like me, feel good when my child is away almost 9 hours a day. I could not think of anyone more deserving of this award.

Rebecca Cox Posted over a year ago

Jennifer is one of those teachers you dream about having for your child, the type that truly illustrates what teaching should be about--engaging the children and building the foundation for them to succeed in the future. She is continuously coming up with ideas to reach out to her students and she throws her whole heart into teaching.

Melba Felty Posted over a year ago

Congratulations Jennifer, what an honor to be nominated by your principal! I have had the pleasure of knowing Jennifer through our Church that we attend! I'm in charge of finding workers to teach our 3year olds - 1st graders during our Children's Church Extended Session so one Sunday I asked her if I could add her to our schedule & she never hesitated about saying yes! She is very kind & considerate of others! She will represent her school well!

Ruby Million Posted over a year ago

Mrs. Adkins is a dynamic teacher and has developed tremendous skills to motivate her students! She gets my vote for recognition based on the time she spent teaching our little one and she has definitely been a positive influence on him! Likewise, I am sure everyone of her students got the same time and attention. I applaud the nomination!

Tametria Bland Posted over a year ago

Congratulations Jennifer! This is an awesome accomplishment!

Marta Mejia Posted over a year ago

Mrs. Adkins In an excellent teacher is always motivating her students to learn, she is a teacher dedicated to her work, she is a wonderful teacher, THANK YOU FOR TEACHING MY SON

Lisa Barker Posted over a year ago

Jennifer was my student teacher and I knew then what a life changer she was going to be. She bonded instantly with my students and treated them all as if they were her own. I was at a Title I school that also had a very diverse population and Jennifer planned for individual instruction. She looks at each student as an individual and moves them forward from wherever they are. Her heart is big and it shows in the success of her students! I am proud to say that not only did I teach Jennifer, but she taught me also!

Tommy Baughman Posted over a year ago

You could not have selected a more deserving Nominee as Mrs. Adkins. The care and attention she provides her students is genuine and sincere as it is from the heart. Referring to her students as "MY KIDS" she guides them with honest and effortless skill that leads many of her students to bask in their own achievements and the value of accomplishment is never left unnoticed as she proudly announces the success of her students as individuals as well as the achievements of the class as a whole. This is not the first time Mrs. Adkins has been set apart and based on her love and caring motivation will not be the last. She teaches a benefit realized today sets a lasting example of all things possible in the future of each student and I have heard her tell them as long as they are willing to read every book will take them on an adventure beyond the place they stand in the here and now. Mrs. Adkins may be in her niche..but she will never be "Stuck in a Rut"..and her students will reap the value!

Mollie King Posted over a year ago

I taught with Jennifer her first year as a teacher. I noticed right off how focused and organized she was. She is a wonderful teacher who gives her all to her students. She is a great assest to any school district.

Katherine Dumire Posted over a year ago

Mrs. Adkins is an amazing example of a teacher that goes above and beyond for her students inside the classroom and out. You can tell she truly loves and is passionate about her job and her role in her students lives.

Tamara Oliver Posted over a year ago

Way to go, Jennifer! You represent Southside Elementary well! Thank you for all that you do!