Alaska's Teacher of the Year shares message with the Kenai Peninsula

Posted: Wednesday, September 19, 2001

Speaking on perhaps the darkest day of our nations history, Patricia Truman told those who turned out for the Soldotna Chamber of Commerce meeting Tuesday, "Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire."

Alaska's Teacher of the Year specializes in language arts at Palmer Junior Middle School. A veteran of 30 years in the classroom Truman doesn't see that education has really experienced any great changes. "More may be known about education due to the sophistication of technology and the rapid media that we have available but the basics haven't really changed that much," says Truman, "Students come to school, they learn, they do what they need to do to be successful and get on with their lives, and that's what school is all about."

Truman, wearing an astronaut suit from a teachers space camp said that space education offers kids the mystery and imagination of space as well as a keen sense of problem solving. "We need our students to be good problem solvers especially in light of what's happened today. We need to solve our problems and differences so that we can avoid these kind of incidents in the future," said Truman. Phillips Petroleum has funded Patricia Truman's travels throughout Alaska to share her message about education.

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