Tools for Teachers: Freeburg High School English teacher wins $500

ST. LOUIS, MO (KPLR)- Mrs. Michelle Etter makes learning fun for all of her students. She is my son’s College Prep English Teacher, and he cannot stop talking about how much he has learned. She teaches her students about culture and diversity in a way where students can actually feel the emotion and live the experience. One assignment in particular was when she taught her students about The Underground Railroad. She designed an activity where the students were the slaves trying to escape to Canada where they could get their freedom papers.

The students had to come back to school for this activity at night. She broke the students up into groups of four. They were given clues and each group had to escape to a particular house in town. While they were running to the houses they could be caught by Bounty Hunters (she got students to do this who wanted extra credit}. Each group had a different house they had to run to (all trusted friends & co-workers}. Once they made it to the house, they had another clue they had to figure out about the history of slavery and the underground railroad. Each house the students had to run to were scattered all over the town of Freeburg, Illinois, and were not close to one another. The students were so worried about getting caught while trying to escape to each house.

The final destination was to get to the football field back at the High School where they would receive their freedom papers. The next day they had to write about their experience for a grade. I loved the way she combined history and English. This lesson about the Underground Railroad was an experience my son will never forget. He said while running to the houses his heart was beating with excitement not to get caught.

With the students adrenaline running so high this definitely was an experience they will never forget. They not only learned about slavery and the underground railroad but also got to feel and experience what it must have felt like for the slaves. She puts a lot of time and effort into this lesson.

This is just one of the many fun lessons Mrs. Michelle Etter does with her students. There are so many creative assignments she does with her students including using a lot of Technology to make learning fun. I wish all of my son’s teachers made learning as fun and memorable as Mrs. Etter.

That is why I feel she deserves this special recognition and award of $500.

Michelle received $500.00 from Weber Chevrolet (

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