By Katie Collins
Brush News-Tribune Staff Writer
“A teacher is a lot like a coach,”noted Beaver Valley fifth gradeteacher Marcia Petterson. “You’rejust preparing them for tests and forlife outside of school,” and sheshould know.As the mother of three Beetdiggerboys, most of this 26-year teachingveteran’s free time is spent chasingher own children to their sportingevents.“Marcia is the consummate teamplayer,” wrote nominators JamiDewey, Lacey Hastings, DonnaLynch, Joyce Sperry and TheresaSchaffer. “In the past three years,Marcia has taught three grade levels.She did not hesitate to changegrades each year as that was whatthe school needed. Each year, ineach grade, her students showedexcellent academic growth and hercaring, kind and understanding way with children and adults is remark-able.”For Petterson, who grew up aKansas native in Marysville beforeattending Emporia State University in her home state to earn a B.S. inEducation, teaching not only runs inthe family, but was something shehad always saw herself enjoying.“Yes, I had wanted to be a teachersince the time I was little,” remi-nisced Petterson, whose husbandBob Petterson serves asSuperintendent for Weldon Valley Schools until he retires in 2013.“Back in those days, at the end of the year we could take the schoolbooks back home and I would play school all summer long," she remi-nisced.Petterson first began her careerteaching special education and sixthgrade in Wamego, Kansas, beforemaking the move to Wray where shespent 11 years as an instructor,teaching Title I reading and math aswell as third grade.In 2002, when the couple moved toBrush, she continued teaching thirdgrade but with a large class of near-ly 130, was asked to move on withmany of those students to bothfourth and then fifth grades, makingher 26-year-long career full of vari-ety.“I love my job most because it isalways fresh and changing, nevercan't,” said Petterson. “You alwayshave a fresh start and new classeach year and at the root of that isthe fact that I often have to evolveand change, and I enjoy that dynam-ic.”When it comes to her class, thereis one motto that Petterson has reit-erated so often that students canfinish the sentiment.“I tell them all the time, ‘Do theright thing’ and they finish the latterhalf, ‘Because it’s the right thing todo’,” noted Petterson. “I follow thatup with lessons in being honest andrespectful.”Although her three sons BJ, a for-mer Marine working at the BrushGrocery Kart, Alec, a sophomore atBHS and Jeron, an eighth grader atBMS, all keep Petterson quite preoc-cupied, she does find time on rareoccasions for hobbies such assewing, quilting and hand crafts.Also, she spends a great deal of
Marcia Petterson...Beaver Valley Elementary School
Team tactics and tenacity helps students soar
CRYSTAL APPLE • BRUSH NEWS-TRIBUNE • WEDNESDAY, MAY 1, 2013
Preparing students for test and ‘life outside of school’ is what Pettersonand the team at Beaver Valley Elementary School strive for.