School districts that adopt Studies Weekly district-wide can now schedule one-on-one or group consultations for their teachers with Studies Weekly’s new teacher advocate, Debbie Bagley. Teachers will receive additional personalized educational support. With Bagley’s 15 years of experience in education, she is a valuable asset.
Debbie’s passion for education began when she’d go with her mom to help set up her first-grade classroom. As she watched her mom transform an ordinary schoolroom into a magical wonderland, she knew she wanted to become a teacher.
She studied elementary education and early childhood at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah. After graduating with two degrees, she earned a Kodály music teaching certificate and taught as a music instructor for three years. She also served on various leadership teams focused on improving education.
After teaching music, Debbie became a kindergarten teacher for Alpine School District and loved every minute of it.
“I love how children that age are excited to learn something new every day,” Debbie said. “My goal was to help my students become lifelong learners so they would achieve their full potential.”
Following her mother’s example, Debbie also strove to teach her students how to be good citizens and respect differences.
“My mother was an outstanding first-grade teacher who always taught her students what good character was and how to follow examples of real-life heroes. It is from seeing the success she had in teaching her students to strive for greatness, responsibility, kindness, and compassion at such a young age, that had a lasting impression on me.”
To Debbie, the best way to teach children good character and responsibility is through social studies. As students learn about and discuss history, they can practice respecting each other’s different opinions and perspectives.
“I always wanted to help my students see that while we celebrate our wonderful and unique differences, we are all human, which makes us more alike than it does different. This is one of the many reasons why social studies is needed today more than ever,” Debbie said.
Debbie’s goal was to integrate good character traits into everything she taught, so she set out on a mission to find a social studies curriculum that included instruction in these skills. As she searched for the perfect fit, Studies Weekly’s unique periodical format caught her eye.
“I loved how engaging it looked!” Debbie said. “It was refreshing to think of using these individual magazine-style weekly publications with my kindergarteners. It was so much nicer than having them try to find the correct page in a huge textbook, especially when they were still learning to count and recognize numbers up to 20.”
Debbie also learned through her research that Studies Weekly aligned with state standards, was organized by themes, and included hands-on activities. Her students also would get to interact with the resources and use them to create projects that showed their learning and understanding in creative ways.
As she used the curriculum, she was thrilled to see how Studies Weekly helped her students develop kindness, cooperation, and empathy through lessons on responsibility and citizenship. Because these skills can increase a student’s well-being and influence productive life choices, she began integrating them into every aspect of her classroom activities.
Becoming Studies Weekly’s Teacher Advocate
Debbie appreciated Studies Weekly so much that she worked for the Utah-based company for two summers as a professional development trainer. Her understanding of how teachers struggle to make time to cover all the required material helped her excel in this role. As she showed teachers they could use Studies Weekly to incorporate social studies and still teach math and ELA standards, she realized there was a need she could help fill.
“When Studies Weekly offered to hire me as a teacher advocate, it was hard to imagine leaving my students. But, I love the Studies Weekly’s vision of engaging children in the learning process and how that empowers students,” she said. “I want all teachers to feel confident, excited, and successful in implementing social studies and character education so that all students and classrooms reap the many benefits. This in turn will positively affect society as a whole. That is my goal.”
Because Debbie understands how stressful life can be for teachers, she has made it her mission, as a teacher advocate, to make using Studies Weekly as easy as possible.
“It is important that teachers find joy in knowing they are making a difference in their students’ lives by helping them become better citizens armed with social and emotional skills,” she said. “I look forward to supporting my fellow educators as they help their students and communities be the best they can be.”
Contact your sales representative to have them schedule a consultation with Debbie Bagley for you or your teachers.