By Derrick Smith
Teachers decide to enter the teaching profession for a variety of reasons. For some, they enjoy working with students, while others want to share their passion for a specific subject. But Laura Johnson was impacted by a few different people that helped her make that decision.
“There are three people that really helped me decide to become a teacher,” she said. “My high school math teacher, Mrs. Lee, was influential in my decision to be an educator. Also, both of my parents are educators which also made a really big impact. I became a teacher because of a desire to share my love of math with others.”
Laura teaches Algebra II, Trigonometry, and Pre-Calculus at Stillwater High School, where she has been a teacher for thirty years. She and her husband Brian have two sons, Jared and Eric, one daughter-in-law in Emily, and a grandson Baker.
In the classroom, Laura says that she enjoys working with the students and helping them to learn and understand new concepts.
“I enjoy interacting with the students,” she said. “I like to challenge them with complex ideas and see them expand their knowledge. I enjoy sharing the students’ excitement in learning and watching their confidence in their mathematical abilities grow.”
Throughout her teaching career, Laura has been given lots of advice from colleagues and others. But she said the best piece of advice she ever received was about how to better help her students.
“The best advice I was given was simple,” she said. “Understanding the cultural background of your students helps build better relationships. Also, homework should not be too long or repetitive.”
When she is not impacting the lives of students at Stillwater high school, Johnson has a lot of other fun ways to spend her time.
“I really enjoy being with my family,” she said. “I also like to travel to new places, camp with friends, and read.”