LifeChanger of the Year Nominee Profile

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Nadene Klein

Position: Science and Psychology Teacher
School: Daniel C. Oakes High School
School District: Douglas County School District
City, State: Castle Rock, CO

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Nadene Klein was nominated by her colleague, Jennifer Harvey.

"I am thrilled to enthusiastically nominate Nadene A. Klein for the prestigious LifeChanger of the Year Award. Nadene's profound impact on the lives of students, colleagues, and the community exemplifies the qualities of an extraordinary educator and a true LifeChanger," said Harvey.

Ms. Klein's journey in education, characterized by her commitment to excellence and innovation, spans decades of transformative teaching experiences. With a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology/Education, Magna Cum Laude, and a Master of Education in TESOL, she has demonstrated unwavering dedication to personal growth and professional development.
As a science teacher at Daniel C. Oakes High School, Ms. Klein has made an indelible mark by engaging at-risk youth in alternative programs. Her courses in zoology, astronomy, physics, earth and environmental sciences, and more have ignited a passion for learning in her students. Her ability to connect with each student on a personal level, fostering their intellectual curiosity and self-confidence, is truly exceptional.

Ms. Klein's leadership extends beyond the classroom. She has revolutionized professional development initiatives in roles such as a Professional Learning Specialist at Rocky Heights Middle School and a Science Department Chair at Cimarron Middle School. Her workshops and seminars on topics like Project Based Learning and Authentic Assessments have impacted educators far beyond her immediate sphere.

Her achievements are further highlighted by her remarkable awards, including the DCSD Secondary Teacher of the Year, AVS Excellence in Science Teaching Secondary Award, and recognition as a Shell Science Teacher of the Year semi-finalist.

Beyond her educational contributions, Ms. Klein's active involvement in various associations, such as the American Association of Physics Teachers, Denver Area Physics Teachers, and more, showcases her commitment to collaboration and continuous growth. Her community involvement, including board positions at You Be You Early Learning and Purple Lotus Warrior Yoga, underscores her holistic approach to education and well-being.

"In summary, Nadene A. Klein's unwavering dedication, innovative teaching practices, and positive influence on students and colleagues exemplify what it means to be a LifeChanger. Her transformative impact on education and beyond is a testament to her exceptional character and commitment to shaping lives. It is with great enthusiasm that I wholeheartedly recommend Nadene A. Klein for the LifeChanger of the Year program," said Harvey.

Comments (53)

Alexandra Posted 4 months ago

I have to commend Mrs. Klein and all of the wonderful teachers at Oakes for the outstanding jobs they do. I feel as if I never got the chance to show and fully appreciate how great the school and all of the teachers really were/are! Thanks for putting up with all you guys do!!

Jaelyn Siegfried Posted 6 months ago

Before I came to Oakes, I had every single science teacher at my old school get frustrated with me not understanding the material, one teacher even told me I'll never graduate because I'm too dumb to pass science. Coming to Oakes and Klein's class changed that for me. Her classes are what I'm looking forward to all day. I always fee smart in her class, it's the best feeling ever!

Carly Richardson Posted 6 months ago

I adore Mrs. Klein so much. Keep up your superb teaching. Thank you for everyhting, I appreciate you so much! Forever thankful that I get to know you!

Jake Byrnes Posted 6 months ago

Thank you for teaching me everything. Although I was probably annoying at times, I still cherish our moments together and am forever grateful for you.

Michael Florido Posted 6 months ago

Mrs. Klein's classroom feels very safe and I love the vibe.

Ronan Lynch Posted 7 months ago

Even as a new student at oaks, I know Mrs Klein is by far the most deserving of this award.

Garrett Posted 7 months ago

I’m not the best student and I sometimes don’t like to be what to told but Ms Klein never took it personal and she always worked with me when I was struggling. I also struggle with learning and the way she teaches really helps me get the material we are learning and I feel that she really cares abt her students, staff, and everyone who comes into oaks.

Charlie Faircloth Posted 8 months ago

Mrs Kline is one if not the best teacher out there. She supports me and my adhd better then anyone! Helps me use it to learn instead of having it and just struggling. I think if anyone should get this award it should be Mrs Kline.

Janelle Hutson Posted 8 months ago

Thank you for being such an amazing teacher and making such a big difference in my daughters life!! You truly do make a big difference in all your students lives!!

Lily Hutson Posted 8 months ago

Mrs. Klein is the most brilliant person I’ve ever met. She spends all of her time devoted to the education of her students and the status of her school, and never lets anything less than perfect be taught in her classroom. Through Covid, life events, and having to leave to be able to speak at national conferences where thousands of people gathered to be blessed with a piece of her intellect. Wether she’s in her classroom or away she strives to teach her students the most beautiful elements of science, and challenges our brains to work harder than we ever have. Klein takes care of us inside of her classroom and out, setting up fundraisers for kids in need and supporting them any way she can. Mrs. Klein is the reason I will be graduating, becoming a teacher, and finding a career in conservation and science, a passion I had not found till she showed me. Mrs. Klein is the best teacher in the country, and especially in the state. She deserves all the recognition she can get and is the picture perfect image of incredible teaching.

Aaron Bishop Posted 8 months ago

Best teacher!!!She deserves it!

Finn Posted 8 months ago

Klein is a great teacher who looks out for her students. As much as she teaches us, she also just cares about us and makes sure to focus on our well-being. Incredible nominee!

Josie Posted 8 months ago

Going to Oaks has been a huge transition for me but being in Kleins class makes it that much easier! Thanks for being amazing!!

Alia Posted 8 months ago

Klein is somehow one of the most accepting and individual focused teachers I have met. She can balance everyone's individual needs while making sure everyone, no matter where they are academically, learns and grows in her classroom. But not even just in her classroom. She organizes trips outside of school and really got the outdoor ed. program back up and running after COVID. With her, I volunteered with wolves, raked hillsides, went spelunking(legitimately), and hiked Mount Bierdstadt, my first fourteener ever. I don't think I would have gone at all if it wasn't for her gentle supportive demeanor. Oh! And yoga. I love doing her yoga. No one else's yoga because yoga is definitely not my thing. She became a trauma informed yoga instructor just during my time with her so that she can share her joy of yoga with us in class and outside of class. She shares herself with us and because of it, I think a lot of people reciprocate because she can truly understand where others cannot. I know she has done more, but solely for what she has done for me and what I have seen her do, she deserves this award.

Cait Posted 8 months ago

klein is an amazing teacher at oakes she’s made sure everyone who comes into this building feels supported during my first quarter here she helped me feel like i belonged here and supported me when i felt like i didn’t even deserve it

Charlie Ferguson Posted 8 months ago

Klein is one of the most intelligent people I know. She’s kind and loving. She has helped me through self doubt. At my beginning of Oakes I wouldn’t take care of myself properly, and she helped me through that. Thank you for all that you do Klein I love you! VOTE KLEIN!!!!

Will Posted 8 months ago

An absolutely phenomenal teacher and an extraordinarily caring person. You make science and learning fun again. <3

Emilio Posted 8 months ago

MY FAVORITE TEACHER EVER thanks for always coming through I’ll never forget science class at Sagewood with you. You’ve inspired more than you know!!

Michael Graves Posted 9 months ago

Mrs. Klein was one of the most important people to me during my time at DC Oakes. She personally gave me the support and care I needed to be able to succeed after high school. I could not think of a better candidate for this award.

Renae Marshall Posted 9 months ago

Mrs. Klein was the first teacher who helped me see myself as a leader and scientist. I was so lucky to have her as a teacher and mentor. I can’t think of anyone else who deserves this award more!

Orion Heng-Fischbach Posted 9 months ago

Nadene Klein truly changed my life. As a High-school student I started my last two years of High-school with almost no motivation to get my Diploma let alone any other degree. She renewed my passion for science and math and introduced me to so many new people at D.C Oakes, Many of whom changed my life for the better. My love for the science of the stars and our universe grew under her guidance and she taught me so many valuable skills about not only science but also about how to love the people around me and how to persevere through the hard times. Nadene Klein truly has so much love in her heart for the people around her and for science. Thanks to her I am now halfway to earning my Associates Degree in Architectural Engineering.

Lori Peeples Posted 9 months ago

Nadene Klein is an extraordinary science teacher whose dedication and passion for her students and their education is an inspiration for all of us. Nadene is not only an asset to our school but also to the field of education as a whole. What truly sets Nadene apart is her passion for outdoor education and experiential learning. She recognizes the value and importance of providing hands-on experiences for her students and continually integrates this into her teaching. Her students have referred to these trips as being life-changing events for them as a result of Nadene’s focus to create these meaningful learning experiences. One of Nadene’s standout strengths is her commitment to foster a strong, supportive and inclusive learning environment. She takes the time to get to know each of her students personally and will tailor her teaching style to meet their individual needs. She is very approachable and her overall concern for all students makes her a beloved teacher in our school. In addition to being a science and psychology teacher, Nadene frequently volunteers to take on additional responsibilities within the school by leading clubs, tutoring, advising students who struggle with academics, and being a yoga instructor. She is definitely a role model and is very deserving of this nomination and should be strongly considered to be awarded as a LifeChanger of the Year for her leadership, excellence and positive influence on students and her co-workers.

Lexi Posted 9 months ago

Mrs. Klein was a phenomenal teacher! She cared about each and every one of her students and made an impact on our lives.

Alexis Posted 9 months ago

Mrs. Klein was an incredible teacher! She deserves this award!

Micah Zediker Posted 9 months ago

I had Mrs. Klein in middle school in 2011. Even all of these years later, she still stands out as one of my favorite teachers. Her class is one of the only I have fully retained and is always present in my memory, and was one that gave me opportunities that I will never forget. I was always excited to attend science class, and I’m so excited to see how many people continue to benefit from how amazing of a teacher and human Mrs. Klein is

Josh M Posted 9 months ago

Mrs.Klein is such a wonderful instructor and above that, a mentor to students and staff alike. Her ability to engage with students and have fun made classroom life memorable and informative. She is an awesome leader for students and staff too. With an positive impact on students learning experiences and lives (the comments speak for themselves!) I can't think of a better example for this award.

Mary Tapp Posted 9 months ago

This amazing woman helped me grow so much. She taught me not only about science and all surrounding subjects, but how to appreciate the world around me and be thankful for myself and others. When I was lucky enough to have her in my life, the path I was on was anything but fun, and the support I was given follows me everywhere I go. I am beyond grateful for her, and I’m honored to have been one of her students.

Autumn Fenton Posted 9 months ago

Mrs. Klein is wholeheartedly dedicated to fostering young minds and contributing to the growth of good humans. She encouraged and supported a love of science that ultimately led to me pursuing a degree in biology! She deserves all the positive recognition for her efforts :)

Mackenzie fredericks Posted 9 months ago

Thank you so much for all of the amazing things you taught me while in school. You helped me become the person I am today! Thank you so much!!!! We all love you!!!!!

Kimberly Posted 9 months ago

Mrs. Klein not only is an exceptional teacher but the most patient and caring person i’ve ever met, who also pushes you to be your best self. She definitely has impacted my life and changed the lives of many. If anyone deserves this award it is undoubtedly her.

Jordan Posted 9 months ago

Klein is one of the best teachers a student could ask for. She excels in knowledge and loves to help others learn. Not only is she an amazing teacher she is a wonderful friend to have. She’s a school mom and takes care of her staff and students like family. I could not have done half of what I did without her by my side and supporting me through the process.

Esabel Posted 9 months ago

Mrs. Klein is an amazing person and teacher who has a great balance between fun and focus. She knows how to put a smile on your face, and will always amaze you with her knowledge.

Ephraim Ogu Posted 9 months ago

Ms. Klein is an incredible instructor who cares deeply about teaching her students and making a lasting impact on each of them. It was her fun approach and unmatched effort that inspired a kid in me who wanted to just skirt by doing the bare minimum. I credit my ability to find the motivation to learn and become an engineer one day to teachers like her.

Tori Hvizdak Posted 9 months ago

I was a student of Mrs. Kleins’ a long time ago, but she still stands out to me as an amazing teacher and leader for young people. She goes out of her way for all her students and absolutely deserves this award!

Mallory Posted 9 months ago

Mrs. Klein is so brilliantly kind, smart and an absolute inspiration. She was the greatest science teacher i could’ve asked for!!

Abbey Posted 9 months ago

Heck YEAH!!!!!!!!

Brandon Osorio Posted 9 months ago

Nadene is an absolute master at her craft, watching her teach kids is impressive and admirable. She is truly a wonderful resource to students and her peers! We are lucky to have her.

Kira Posted 9 months ago

Ms. Klein's taught me in high school and made learning a joy. I was a struggling student who thrived under her care and work in the classroom. She's changed tons of students life's myself included. The work she does for that school is tremendous.

Cait O’Shea Posted 9 months ago

Mrs.Klein is one of the most amazing human beings I have ever met. She truly loves every single one of her students and treats them as if they were her own kids. I had the privilege of getting to know Mrs.Klein during my senior year of high school and I truly couldn’t have gotten through it without her support.

Megan Mahnken Posted 9 months ago

It was always a treat to start and end the day in Ms. Klein’s class. What a wonderful teacher she is and was.

Mitchell Clark Posted 9 months ago

Mrs. Klein introduced me and my family to Oakes with open arms and convinced them to bring me to this amazing school. She deserves a Nobel prize!

Alex Rosenlof Posted 9 months ago

Nadene is an exceptional science teacher who has truly ignited my passion for learning about the world around us. Her enthusiasm for the subject is infectious, and her teaching style is both engaging and effective. She goes above and beyond to make complex concepts understandable, using real-world examples and interactive experiments that leave a lasting impact. Nadene's dedication to her students' success is evident in the way she patiently addresses questions and provides individualized support. Her classroom is a welcoming and inspiring space where curiosity is nurtured, and I'm grateful to have had the opportunity to learn under her guidance when I was in middle. School over 12 years ago!

Neil Posted 9 months ago

Mrs. Klein was an absolute blessing in my life and got me to be forever interested in science! I have never lost the passion and curiosity she instilled in me as a child and I am forever grateful to this amazing woman! Thank you so much!!!!!! <3

Joe Schneiderwind Posted 9 months ago

Nadene is such a great person! I am fortunate enough to work with her at Daniel C Oakes, and I love her creativity and willingness to work with me in cross curricular projects. I teach math and Nadene has worked with me to find a way that both of our classes (whichever ones they may be) can work together on something. She helped me find a way to work with geometry/physics, and statistics/astronomy, both of which the students loved. As a newer teacher, I'm so appreciative of Nadene and her commitment to our students, but also to helping me improve as a teacher. She definitely deserves this award.

Kenzie Posted 9 months ago

Absolutely the best science teacher I ever had. Mrs. Klein cares immensely about her students and will do anything within her power to support them.

Shelby chavez Posted 9 months ago

One of the best teachers out there! She made learning fun and inspiring. Love you!

Jaime McVicker Posted 9 months ago

I had the pleasure of meeting Mrs. Klien at Daniel C Oakes high-school the last quarter before I graduated. Becoming the new science teacher, she had very big shoes to fill... but she has filled them flawlessly. She fits in perfectly with the incredible staff at DC Oakes high-school, and is yet another reason kids wake up happy to go to school. This school is a safe haven for at risk youth of all kinds, and Mrs. Kliens classroom is no different. Being a teacher at this highschool, it is simply inevitable that you will change many lives in the course of your career. It takes a special type of person to work with kids like the ones that need Oakes to graduate, a very beautiful type of person. Nadene Klien is one of said beautiful people who will continue to impact the lives of many students who need it the most.

Nora Tipton Posted 9 months ago

Nadene Klein was my 7th grade science teacher over 25 years ago. To this day there are lessons that impact my life and now my children’s life. She is a light in her field not just to students but other educators as well. She truly deserves this honor.

Scott Brady Posted 9 months ago

I came to Oakes, an alternative school, after twenty-two years in a traditional classroom. After Covid, I was uncertain whether I wanted to return. When I learned about Oakes High School, I knew I had to come back. It's a remarkable school, really a home for the students who attend Oakes. And I have to say, Ms. Klein is a huge part of what makes this place so great. I've been here only two months, but experiencing education done "the Oakes Way" has revitalized my passion for teaching. Not only has Ms. Klein been an invaluable resource in helping me transition to Oakes - the culture, expectations, relationships, and so many other things - she's been nothing but kind and encouraging to her coworkers and - most importantly - the students. And it's not just her students she works so diligently to uplift, but all Oakes students. She lights fires in all of the students here, and is a true beacon for what we as educators can accomplish.

Charles Pollet Posted 9 months ago

One of our best and an amazing presence for so many things we count on her for every day.

Dr. TimKubik Posted 9 months ago

I’ve presented with Nadene Klein and find her a passionate advocate for the life and learning of children. I’m glad to see others recognize this too.

Lisa L. Sharpe Douglas County School District Posted 9 months ago

Hello-I worked with Nadine for 6 years, starting at Legend High School then both of us moving to Cimarron Middle School once the building was completed. I knew Nadine as a science teacher. Nadine's connection to students and creativity are what stand out in my mind. She would come up with the coolest things to get and keep students engaged. She was always a positive roll model for students and they respected her and behaved so in her classroom. I loved the time of year where she would wear different outfits each day, and see if the students noticed. She was teaching about observations and used this unit to teach students that scientist have to be observant to be successful. I am sure there were other reasons she did this, but this is what I took away from her week-long experiment. Nadine now works with high school students who may be struggling to complete their studies. This is not surprising to me. I can definitely see her wanting to have the last part of her teaching career be really meaningful to the students and to her school. Nadine has definitely changed lives throughout her career and would be very deserving on this honor.

Don Cygan Posted 9 months ago

Nadene is a compassionate and professional teacher that I can say I've had the pleasure of working with. Great colleague, a great educator, and an awesome person in general. Congratulations, Nadene!