Central States Conference on the Teaching of Foreign Languages
Carrie Toth is an outstanding Spanish teacher at Carlyle High School in Carlyle, Illinois. She recently became the recipient of the Foreign Language Teacher of the Year in Illinois for 2013. Her principal describes Carrie as being extremely passionate about teaching and most importantly about her students. Because of her efforts with the students, she was nominated for the innovative educator award given by the Kaskaskia Region of the IPA. She was a unanimous choice for the award. She is always willing to go out of her way for other teachers, and has been helpful in establishing the National Board Certified Teacher Program in her district. Carrie has been a mentor for many teachers for this program. This knowledgeable dynamo has boundless energy and passion in regards to the teaching of Spanish. She has awakened the love of a foreign language in her district for the past eleven years. Carrie motivates her scholars with unique instruction that spills from within the walls of her high school classroom to the adjacent junior high building. A fifth grade teacher has witnessed the outstanding preparation of her high school seniors as they carry their foreign language expertise to their fifth and sixth grade counterparts. It is here that Senora Toth’s students share what they have learned in class with engaging activities that captivate the minds of the ten to twelve year olds. Competent groups of four to five students teach these young junior high pupils the basics of conversational Spanish while allowing the eager learners to get up and be physical participants in the lesson. These amateur teachers become respected mentors to their junior high buddies, and in the process, have increased confidence in their mastery of the language. Carrie has earned the respect from her students, peers, and administrators. They make note of her commitment to enlighten others of the importance and increasing necessity of becoming bilingual. Former students of Carrie’s continue the quest of competence in Spanish and pursue degrees in the vein. She is selfless in her time, often aiding fellow educators and members of the community when there is a breakdown in communication due to language barriers.
Milton Alan Turner