Position: Physical Education Teacher
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School: Ilchester Elementary School
School District: Howard County Public School System
City, State: Ellicott City, MD
Peg Buckmaster was nominated by Jan Knutsen, a member of the community.
Ms. Buckmaster has been a physical education teacher for over 30 years, and she currently teaches 5th graders at Ilchester Elementary in Ellicott City, Maryland. She supports her students, and her teaching style always includes her excellent sense of humor. For instance, when a bit of levity is called for, she will don her T-rex costume and provide a short video to her class on sportsmanship, patience, or another quality that she promotes to her students. She always develops creative ways to maintain students' attention, especially during the pandemic, when they're at home and having classes via Zoom.
When her classes started this fall, she created a video with the song, "All by Myself" showing her trying to play a sport all by herself. Then, she introduced herself to her new class, saying she was sad they could not be together in person, that being alone wasn't a lot of fun, and that it's difficult to throw a ball or swing a racket without another person present. She also said they will make the best of it!
Peg is an outstanding physical education teacher, leader and person. Ive had the pleasure of working with her during my time as a teacher, resource teacher, and now her curriculum supervisor. She always implements lessons based on best practices, curriculum standards, and distinguished levels of instruction. She leads with her amazing sense of humor and passion for strong relationships and caring for each student. Peg has also been a leader outside of her school building. Throughout her career she has written curriculum, designed professional learning, mentored teachers, hosted student teachers, and volunteers for our professional organization. Peg is an asset to our physical education team. This was never more evident than during the pandemic as we relied on her humor, compassion, and positive attitude during weekly professional learning meetings. Thank you for all that you do for our program!
I had the pleasure to be taught by Ms. Buckmaster during my elementary school years at Ilchester. She was one of those educators that make a lasting impact on you. Ms. Buckmaster was patient, passionate and always willing to take the time to make sure you mastered the skill being worked on (even if that meant making you do extra reps). She has continued to display these characteristics long into her career. Now as a college graduate, I have also had the opportunity to work alongside her. Watching her mold young minds with her passion for physical education for this long truly makes her a life changer!
As Peg's PE teaching partner for the last 21 years at our Elementary School, I've had the pleasure of seeing her in action on a daily basis. Peg thoroughly knows the elementary PE curriculum and implements outstanding lessons for all of our PE units throughout the school year. In addition, she has such a positive rapport with all of our students. She has the ability to balance humor, kindness, thoughtfulness, and having high expectations for all students with consistently enforcing protocols for behavior and safety to fully engage students at all times.
I have been a colleague of Peg's for 32 years. She has been the Elementary Physical Education Teacher of the Year for Maryland; served on numerous committees for our Maryland State Physical Education Association, including being the Elementary Chairperson to organize sessions for our annual PE conference in the Fall; and received several teaching awards in both Baltimore and Howard County School Systems for her excellence in education. Peg has written Physical Education curriculum for both of these county systems over the last 25+ years. Finally, she has had several PE interns from different Universities in our state and guided them through their student teaching experience at the elementary level. Many of these interns have become colleagues in our content area. She is a dedicated professional that has positively influenced hundreds of our PE colleagues through these endeavors.
Peg recently received a card from one of her students that summarizes the positive impact she has on our students everyday at our school. "Thank-you Ms. Buckmaster for teaching me. You make me stronger and braver!" Peg Buckmaster has been positively changing lives and making students stronger and braver for 32 years and is extremely deserving to receive this award!
Peg Buckmaster embodies everything associated with this award. She truly is a Life Changer to the students she teaches and their families, as well as the staff she interacts with. She is an outstanding individual! Peg values getting to know the students, meeting them where they are physically, emotionally and educationally and then challenging them to meet her high standards in an encouraging/supportive atmosphere. As a parent, who has been blessed to have all three of my children in her gymnasium, she goes above and beyond each day to make every interaction meaningful. It's not just what she teachers in the gymnasium but rather how to treat others. Using her outgoing personality to model for the students and staff how to go the extra mile to fill someone else's bucket. Peg Buckmaster, I cannot think of anyone more deserving of this award!
Peg Buckmaster is a class act among teachers in the physical education subject area as well as the educational population as a whole. She continuously strives to better her teaching strategies and activities as the times of technology and needs of students change around her. I was honored to have learned under her for a year during my elementary education class for undergraduate student teaching. The level of control and respect that Ms. Buckmaster maintained over her class was impeccable. From ages 5 to 11, the students gazed at her with clear and wondering eyes. I truly learned what it was like when someone had a passion and loved their craft. I didn't realize the additional time put forth by a quality teacher before Ms. Buckmaster thoroughly set up and reflected with every single class in which she taught. This was why the students loved her so much.
Ms. Buckmaster is great. Maybe that's not the best most professional way of saying it... but why not? She is great. She is professional, kind, and treats her students, colleagues and friends in a way in which she would want to be treated. She is deserving, more than any, to be honored as a Lifechanger.
I’m lucky to know Peg as both a coworker and a teacher of my 4 children. In both roles, she’s fantastic! As a coworker, Peg is someone you can count on. There were many, many times when help was needed and Peg stepped up in order to make sure the job got done for both the benefit of the staff and students.
As a parent, I was able to see how her teaching instilled a love of physical activity in her students. I remember one time while camping with another neighborhood family, there was an egg throwing contest at the campgrounds. Throughout the competition, our kids kept yelling to each other the same encouraging words that Peg would say to them in class - “Remember to Tick, Tock”, “Just do your best”, etc. Those words work because out of a field of 20 teams, our families placed 1st and 2nd! Take a walk in our neighborhood and you’ll hear many a “123… I love PE” as children say this while looking both ways before crossing the street - something Peg taught them while driving in “Scooter City”.
I’m so glad to see that Peg Buckmaster has been nominated for this honor. I can’t think of anyone else who could deserve it more!
As an assistant principal, I have had the pleasure of working with Ms. Buckmaster for three years. She is an amazing educator, leader, and colleague. Ms. Buckmaster works hard to form relationships with students, and these connections motivate students to try their best and to feel successful. Her encouragement, humor, and persistence has made PE a great experience for all students. Peg is always willing to jump in and help wherever needed, and this teamwork has been so important especially during this time when we are constantly making adjustments to schedules, coverage, and learning needs. Ms. Buckmaster truly is a distinguished teacher who serves as a great role model to others and always has such a positive attitude. She is very deserving of this nomination!