This is Vassar: The newsletter for Vassar College Alumnae/i and Families

Photo credit: Courtesy of Deva Kyle

Daniel Pereira ’01 Earns Prestigious Teaching Award

Daniel Pereira ’01 has received the 2009 Washington Post Agnes Meyer Teacher of the Year Award for his innovative work with students at the George Washington Community School, a college prep school for students dealing with drug abuse, social anxiety, learning disabilities, and bullying. His nomination for the award came directly from the parents and students of the school, where he also serves as a college counselor.

A double major in English and cognitive science, Pereira realized that a position as a teacher would allow him to indulge his interests in both literature and the brain. After graduation, he took a teaching job at the small private school in Springfield, Virginia created for students who have encountered trouble completing their studies at public schools. Pereira’s school makes sure to keep class sizes low — there are only about 50 students per grade — and emphasizes the importance of creativity as a means of engagement. As an English teacher, Pereira has done his part, designing a curriculum that infuses studies of more classic books and literature with lessons on graphic novels, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, and iambic pentameter using the music of Run-DMC.

November 2009

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