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2012 Excellence in Teaching Award Winner

Camille Townsend, 4th and 5th grade, Ketcham Elementary School

Camille Townsend began teaching at Ketcham Elementary School eight years ago as a DC Teaching Fellow.

After Ms. Townsend’s father, who was ill with cancer at the time, told her to “find out what she wanted to do and pursue it no matter what,” she decided to leave law school and become a teacher.

Ms. Townsend has served in numerous leadership roles at Ketcham, including serving on the Academic Leadership Team and as the teacher lead for upper grades, assisting her colleagues with lesson planning, student grouping strategies, and behavior management.

Inside the classroom, Ms. Townsend has created an environment that demands the best from her students.  Her students not only learn—they experience. Just like their animated teacher, Ms. Townsend’s students “adjust their invisible binoculars to show that they are analyzing something, and do ‘snake dances’ to show that they need to use their rounding rules.”

Witnessing Ms. Townsend teach is a joy for anyone who visits her classroom. Principal Tyler wrote, “Ms. Townsend makes me a better principal. I get butterflies when I watch her deliver instruction and see excitement in the eyes of her students. She inspires me every day to be better.”