Teacher of the Year Finalist: Allison Bear

J. Allen Axson Montessori School

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Timing is everything.

When Allison Bear found out that a position was opening up at the J. Allen Axson Montessori School during her senior year at UNF, she knew it was the perfect fit.

Bear had interned at the school and instantly knew it was the right place for her. Eleven years later, she believes it even more, which makes it easy to stay motivated.

"I always think to myself I always want to do more," Bear said. "What can I do to better serve the children in our building. It makes it very easy."

At Axson Montessori School, Bear has become one of the most requested teachers at the primary level, where she teaches young students, three, four and five years old. The system there provides her the chance to impact those children over the course of three years, instead of the standard one-year stretch.

"Not only focusing on those language and early math lessons, but teaching grace and courtesy skills, practical life, conflict resolution," said Bear. "All of those skills to help our children learn more each day."

She has also served as a teacher-coach for reading and writing in grades K through 2 for the past three years and when she isn't teaching children, she is mentoring new teachers.