LifeChanger of the Year Nominee Profile

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Lisa Manka

Position: Second Grade Teacher
School: Linden Elementary School
School District: Fremont Public Schools
City, State: Fremont, NE

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Music that Describes Lisa

Lisa Manka was nominated by a family member, Jeff Manka.

"I have had the privilege of observing Lisa's teaching expertise at Linden Elementary School in Fremont," said Jeff. "During those times, Lisa has taken total responsibility for being the second grade teaching team leader, chairperson for the Tier One Intervention Team and served in a variety of other leadership capacities."

From the beginning of her teaching career, Ms. Manka has demonstrated mastery of the content for which she's responsible.  She has an excellent understanding of a variety of concepts and how to break processes down into steps students can understand.  This thorough understanding also helps her to connect concepts she is teaching to those that students are already familiar with in order to help them construct their own understanding.

Students in Ms. Manka's classroom are always actively involved in their learning.  She has high expectations for student achievement and is willing to do whatever she can to help them succeed.  Her students enjoy their math centers and feel safe in sharing their answers and participating in discussions and activities.  She is always encouraging students and helps them develop confidence in their own abilities.

The lessons Ms. Manka has taught have been very well planned.  Lessons always flow well, and activities are varied to hold students’ interests. Ms. Manka is continually assessing students’ progress throughout the instructional time and is adjusting accordingly.  Guided practice is provided before assignments are given in order to be sure students have no misconceptions.  At the end of the work time, Ms. Manka poses a thought-provoking question to provide closure to the lesson and allow students to summarize their learning.

When communicating with parents and students, Ms. Manka demonstrates excellent oral and written language skills.  Her instructions to students are always specific and easily understood.  She discusses problems with students individually, providing advice on how they can improve their performance. 

The professional attitude Ms. Manka exhibits is exemplary.  She has gone beyond the expected from day one.  She has attended professional development opportunities during in-service days and has used the methods presented in class.

"Lisa is extremely committed to her role as an educator.  She enjoys students and strives to make their experience in class both enjoyable and successful," said Jeff. "If my children were in her school, I would feel fortunate if they had Lisa as their teacher."

Comments (6)

Mandy Posted over a year ago

Lisa is an amazing teacher and touches the lives of so many children! She has dedicated her life to children of all ages- not only at school but also in her personal life! I can’t think of a more deserving person for this award!

Sandy Greunke Posted over a year ago

She is a great nominee. Lisa would be a great representative for your Life Changer of the Year award. Good luck from both of us.

Mary Thomsen Posted over a year ago

Teachers like Lisa are rare these days. Kind, considerate and always taking time for each individual student is such a gift that she gives every day she's in the classroom. Teaching is not Lisa's 'job'; it's her mission. From the first day that her students walk into her room to the last day when the school year is over, each and everyone of them are better, not only as students but as individuals. Lisa came to my office at the YMCA a month ago asking for my help. Her class had come in to ice skate and unfortunately, one little girl had forgotten to bring socks with her and therefore was not able to skate that day. Needless to say the child was heartbroken and crying. Instead of just letting the child sit in the bleachers and watch her classmates have fun, Lisa came to me and asked for help. We found two socks (not matches, but they would work!) and there you go - problem solved! Lisa didn't have to do this, but the girl's happiness was that important to her. I can't think that there's anyone more qualified and deserving of this honor. What a much better world we would have with more teachers like Lisa Manka.

Gabby Magana Posted over a year ago

My name is gabby magana I’m a senior a Fremont high, I’m 18 years old and Lisa manka it’s my lifechanger I meet Lisa 5 years ago when I came to the U.S, I didn’t know no one in Fremont and also I didn’t speak English . Lisa was my sister second grade sister and by my sister I got to know Lisa , she was a teacher to me she help me learnd English she would always read books to me and help me write , she became my friend and a sister she was there for me when no one else was she help me stand up and work hard to reach my dreams . Lisa has a big heart she is willing to give her time away to help others . She help me learn English, have confidence in myself believe that I can do anything that I desire ,when I’m having a bad day and I need to cry I know I have Lisa’s shoulder and she would be always there for me . Now I’m a senior and thanks to Lisa I was chosen to be in the UNMC High School Allience , I am confident, I learned English, I’m almost a CNA and EMT but most important I am a better person Lisa inspire me to be a better person and always help others . Lisa it’s on of a kind

Karie Martin, Ed.S. Posted over a year ago

Lisa is more than deserving of this award. I had the privilege of working alongside Lisa for 10 years. I was blessed to be an observer in Lisa's classroom during institution times. Students were always engaged in learning in creative ways. She always spoke with kindness and calm, especially when a student was struggling. She was a leader of PBIS practices before our district adopted larger systems policies. Lisa works very hard to intervene in ways to support her students. If there was a better way to teach a skill, she would be open and willing to try. When classroom level supports weren't enough, Lisa showed compassion to the parents who were being offered an evaluation for their son or daughter. Even then, she would try more ways to help. Lisa continues to work hard for her classroom, grade level team, building, and district. We are blessed to have her at Fremont Public Schools. ~Karie Martin, Ed.S. School Psychologist

Maynard and Linda Manka Posted over a year ago

So PROUD of all your accomplishments and dedication to the teaching profession. For sure we know how hard you work not just during the school hours, but well into the evening every night! So HONORED to call you daughter-in-law!! Good Luck!! You are already a WINNER in our book and in our hearts!