Mrs. Ellen Zschunke
Lion’s Pride Award Recipient – Mrs. Ellen ZschunkePresented on Tuesday, March 20, 2012 at the School Board of Directors Public Meeting
Mrs. Ellen Zschunke is the Lion’s Pride Award recipient for March of 2012 for her extraordinary contributions to our School District. Mrs. Zschunke is the Library/Media Specialist for the Pine Road Elementary School as well as the Vice Present of Public Relations for the Lower Moreland Township Education Association. In that capacity, Ellen is the liaison to the Executive PTA whose role is to keep parents abreast of current events and future happenings in our district as well as to provide support and education about the role of the PTA to the school community.
Ellen began her journey in education after she graduated from Shippensburg University with a degree in Elementary and Early Childhood Education. After graduation, she began working in the Hatboro-Horsham School District as an Instructional Assistant. Shortly thereafter, Ellen was chosen to be the Director of the Goddard School in Horsham. In 2004, Ellen joined our district as a long term substitute kindergarten teacher. A short time later, Ellen became a permanent member of the staff of Pine Road. In her tenure, she has served as a 1st Grade Teacher, Lead Teacher for Technology and now as a Library/Media Specialist.
During her years as a classroom teacher, Ellen continued her education and earned her Master’s degree from Gwynedd-Mercy College in Reading as well as her Reading Specialist certification. She realized as she pursued her studies and through her work that her passion was the sharing of literature with children and extending their learning through literature. As a result of her emerging passion, Ellen went on to study at Acradia University earning her certification in Library and Information Science. Ellen’s passion for literacy and technology made her the ideal educator to become librarian, media specialist, and first ever coordinator and innovator of the Pine Road TV studio! During Ellen’s time in this role, she has truly created an emerging and successful program. Building upon a successful foundation, Ellen has created even more exciting and innovative opportunities in the Pine Road School Library.
Some of Ellen’s successes are as follows:
· Program Development: Prior to the transition to Pine Road School, 4th and 5th grade students did not have library as a regular class. Ellen has developed that program and is now overjoyed by the enthusiastic and large participation of those students in the book club last year and the Nook Book Club this year.
· Visiting Authors: Pine Road Library has hosted several author visits this school year with two additional visits planned four of which were done through Skype (there are two additional Skype visits planned for this school.) The children prepare for the visits by creating and submitting online questions for the author. The children especially enjoyed the visit of author Lauren Tarshis!
· Pine Road TV Studio: Ellen is responsible for creating and growing a tremendous program at Pine Road school!
· Six Flags Read to Succeed – Ellen created this program which rewards students who complete six hours of recreational reading. Those who complete the program become eligible to win free admission to a Six Flags theme park.
· Most importantly, Ellen greatly supports the PTA efforts by educating teachers about the purpose of the PTA, attending PTA events, supporting sound systems for such events, and by always taking the extra time to support, promote and educate others about the partnership between parents and schools.
When you ask Ellen what challenges she faces in her role, she will tell you that her challenge is finding time to do all the things that I would like to! She is enthusiastic, creative, innovative and a true supporter of the students of our school district.