LifeChanger of the Year Nominee Profile

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Margaret McQuaig

Position: Science/Math Teacher
School: Jefferson Elementary School
School District: Pryor Public Schools
City, State: Pryor, OK

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Margaret McQuaig was nominated by a colleague who wished to remain anonymous. 

Mrs. McQuaig is passionate about student success.  She works tirelessly, coming in early to meet with struggling students before school and staying late to work with students after school.  She has a desire to help students succeed in both math and science. Her math test scores have been evidence that she is doing an excellent job. 

Mrs. McQuaig's love of nature has translated into community gardens in the back of the school that are designed to attract different types of butterflies.  She and her students care for these gardens.  She has also helped students research and plant gardens that contain native plants that will benefit the animals and insects of the region. Mrs. McQuaig has worked many hours with her students to  keep these gardens aesthetically pleasing while maintaining the integrity and sustainability of the area.

She also volunteers to run a Nature Club weekly at her school.  Students study insects and other animals and learn how to care for the world in a reasonable way.  She has planned many trips that take students birding or to state parks to be exposed to other types of local wildlife.  Her work has provided all of her students with an active outdoor classroom that is used frequently. Teachers and students have been able to observe the complete lifecycle of many butterflies and insects, creating a love for nature. Many of the students not only know about nature, but are passionate about preserving and caring for it and volunteer their time to make sure it is done well

Many of Mrs. McQuaig's former students return regularly to visit with her and volunteer to help make sure the gardens look nice. She has certainly brought opportunity to her students and changed her school for the better.



Comments (14)


Alex Mccutcheon Posted over a year ago

Absolutely amazing teacher!!! Always there for all of her stdudents!! Present and previous!!

Nette Posted over a year ago

Ms McQuaig's gardens are butterfly friendly. Margaret and her students have planted nectar plants and host plants for a variety of butterflies. Her students are the educators to the primary students. They take their knowledge to the younger ones, share and create interest; continuing the interest, love and respect of nature.

Brandi Minor Posted over a year ago

Wonderful teacher that cares for each and every student that walks through her door. Great teacher for this award.

Miss Henry Posted over a year ago

I appreciate Ms. McQuaig's kind words of encouragement not only to students but to her fellow teachers. I still have an email from Margaret encouraging me as teacher.

Dusty Harrison Posted over a year ago

Ms. McQuaig worked almost every day of her summer break on the flower gardens and community gardens at Jefferson Elementary. She involves former students and mentors them in not only gardening but service to school/community. She always has a warm smile and word of encouragement to students. She is very deserving of this honor.

Karen Tanner Posted over a year ago

I haven't known Mrs. McQuaig very long, but already I have seen her committment to our learners and to teaching them about our world. She has done a wonderful job with the landscaping. Our school grounds are beautiful. It is a great asset to our school.

Shane carey Posted over a year ago

She is a wonderful teacher and deserves this award. I thank her for all the help with my son. He was very inspired by her! Respectfully, R. Shane Carey

Kerrie Robison Posted over a year ago

Mrs..McQuaig is a truly upstanding person and teacher who displays an unquestionable amount of dedication and support to both the school and the children. I have had three of my four children be bessed to have her as a teacher. She spent countless hours with one who struggled understanding math completely and as a result she now has a solid understanding of basic math priniples. Our children still hug her and speak to her when we see her in the community and also visit her at the school. Great job, Mrs. McQuaig!!

Brian Posted over a year ago

Great job! I watched her work incredibly hard all summer. She is a great teacher in the classroom as well!

Lesa Wolfe Posted over a year ago

Not only have I the pleasure of working with Margaret, I have a child in her class this year. She goes above and beyond as a teacher and a friend.

Jennifer Murray Posted over a year ago

Margaret is so passionate about the outdoors and nature. She loves to teach and share her knowledge with the kids. Thank you Margaret for all your hard work and dedication to Jefferson and the students.

Susan Fails Posted over a year ago

It is so encouraging to see how Margaret shares her passion for nature with the kids. I love to see the interest and enthusiasm she inspires in them. The wisdom and knowledge she has spread to not only the kids but also the adults, is amazing. The transformation she has led to improve our community is phenomenal. I love the work done at Jefferson Elementary and how she involved the kids and let them gain pride by getting their own hands dirty. Her care and compassion toward her students is displayed daily. My own child refers to her as "one of her favorite teachers." She truly is a LIFECHANGER!

Cindy Posted over a year ago

I love seeing the gardens at school. My kids love them too. I hope my daughter gets her as a teacher next year and my son a few years later. I'm excited to see how much more they do with these gardens. Thank you Mrs McQuaig.

Linda Tincher Posted over a year ago

Margaret is a dedicated teacher and she has transformed our building through the creation and upkeep of the outdoor garden area. Our students take pride in these areas and in they have an understanding of the importance of sustainability and the role they play in it. Older students that have left our building regularly come back to visit with her. She has spent countless volunteer hours helping students care for these areas. She was a Project Based Learning expert long before PBL was in vogue. She has also makes sure students succeed in the classroom by offering tutoring before and after school. Students show great growth under her guidance. Margaret is a great asset to our school and to our community.