Anna Morris is HES Teacher of the Year

Anna Morris and her kindergarten students are studying patterns in math. Filling the walls are examples from the semester—Swinging Into Literacy, The Jungle News and Jungle Jobs. Plastic toucans and monkeys swing overhead sporting the numbers 1-20. (contributed)

By LAURA BROOKHART / Community Columnist

When you enter the kindergarten classroom of Anna Morris, HES Teacher of the Year, consider yourself immersed in a colorful learning cocoon.

Enthusiastic young faces happily share what is going on in their day. Mr. Mooseltoe has been visiting the classroom and Mallory explains Mr. Mooseltoe has gone home with each child to spend one night before he re-boards the Polar Express at Christmas break.

Maggie added, “After Mr. Mooseltoe spends the night, you write about what you did together.”

Morris has a SmartBoard in her classroom, received from a grant she submitted.

“We are working to have one for every HES classroom,” she said.

Morris is in her third year teaching at HES, plus two previous years as an Eclipse Program Instructional Aid. She attended Auburn and received her masters from University of Montevallo. She also serves as United Way coordinator, Fall on the Farm coordinator, Guidance Advisory Committee member and Math Committee member.

“My interest in teaching began as a little girl. I had a mock classroom set-up in my bedroom and I took every opportunity to teach everyone — including my dolls and stuffed animals.”

“Over the years,” Morris said, “I have discovered that not only does teaching fulfill my desire to work with children, but it also gives me a chance to explore my other interests such as crafts, art and technology. Teaching provides me with the opportunity to combine many of my passions.”

She gives credit to her father, Fonde Melton, a business instructor and high school English teacher.

“His dedication, work ethic and rapport with his students stands out in my mind.”

Morris and her class went to Baker Farms to choose and bring back their classroom Christmas tree, which is decorated with gingerbread people, each with the photographed face of a student.

“I make my classroom my second home, and you will see that everything on our walls is made by the students.”

In March at open house, parents will visit the classroom and each child will show what he has learned in reading, writing and math.


Laura Brookhart can be reached by email at