Receiving the Presidential Award is like winning a gold medal at the Olympics. It is definitely the pinnacle of achievements in my teaching career. This award not only validates my hard work, but it also shines recognition on my family, colleagues, and administrators as their guidance and support have helped me to become the educator I am today. This award's recognition will help me make my community aware of the importance of STEM education in the early grades. I am humbled and honored!

Michelle Traynum Anderson, SC | K-6, Science, 2020

The official biography below was current at the time of the award.

Michelle Traynum has been a teacher for 24 years, with the last four years at Homeland Park Primary School. She currently teaches kindergarten through second grade STEAM classes and serves as a mathematics coach for the school. She previously taught first grade for six years at South Fant Elementary School, one year at McLees Elementary School, and 13 years at Midway Elementary School. Michelle is a Project Lead The Way Launch teacher and implements this curriculum in her classroom. The Project Lead The Way model takes the project-based learning approach and encourages students to collaborate with each other to solve real-world problems. At the school and district levels, Michelle has led various professional development sessions. She has also led STEAM-based professional development sessions for area teachers at a local university. In 2017, Michelle was named the District Teacher of the Year and later went on to help develop a teacher forum where she serves as a member of the leadership council. Michelle has earned a B.A., cum laude, in elementary and deaf education from Lenoir-Rhyne University and an M.Ed. in creative arts in learning from Lesley University. She is a National Board Certified Early Childhood Generalist.

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