ALFA HONORS TEACHER FROM MOUNT HOPE HIGH SCHOOL
MONTGOMERY Barry Wiginton, a science teacher at Mount Hope High School, has been named Alfa's Teacher of the Month for February.
Wiginton teaches physics, chemistry, biology I and II, algebra I, physical science and integrated science at Mount Hope High School and has taught all science courses in grades 7-12 at the school. As this month's winner, he will receive $1,000 from Alfa, as will his school.
Wiginton earned his bachelor's degree from the University of North Alabama in 1992 and his master's degree from there in 1997. He said his teaching philosophy is based upon experience -- "learning must be fun or it does not happen."
"In a world of video games, music videos, and four-wheelers, the hyper-stimulated teen has a problem focusing on facts presented in such out-dated methods as lecture and structured note taking," Wiginton said. "It is my desire to foster the attitude that learning is a life-long process that is as essential to the mind as exercise is to the body."
Wiginton and his classes are responsible for the development of the Mount Hope Nature Trail that was constructed with funds received through a grant he helped secure. The trail is used as a teaching tool to collect data and conduct experiments for students in K-12 grades, according to Tony Rutherford, the school's principal.
During 2000, the Alfa Teacher of the Month program will honor one outstanding public school teacher from each of the state's eight public school board districts; two private school teachers and two principals. Each winner is chosen based on an independent committee's evaluation of the applications received.