Educator of the Month
The Board of Education recognizes an educator in our school system who truly emulates a teacher’s love for her job, her students and her school. She has been a member of her school community for over ten years and is so appreciated by teachers and staff and she is loved by the families she serves.
Maija Denson teaches 5th grade at Oakwood Elementary and one of her main roles is the Math Lead Teacher for her school. In this role as math lead, she has been the champion of transforming math instruction at Oakwood! She communicates the initiatives of the elementary math office and works with staff to bring the newest components of math curriculum and instruction to life in the classrooms. She helps to identify needs within the staff and creates meaningful professional development opportunities to help math instruction continually improve and meet the needs of her students. Maija’s classroom serves as a model for other teachers in creating rigorous instruction for all levels. In light of teachers tackling new curriculum and changing content, Maija always remains positive and works to be a problem-solver for any challenge that may arise. She seeks out solutions and ideas rather than dwell in the challenges. She seeks to listen and support concerns but also keeps the conversations moving forward and regards everyone with respect.
Outside of her classroom Ms. Denson has coordinated and facilitated math family nights to promote positive math interactions for families and help them learn strategies and ideas to support their learners at home. Maija also serves as the chair of the Science Committee where she facilitates the science fair and was a key member in helping Oakwood receive the distinction of Maryland Green School.
For the past several years, Maija has directed a free reading summer camp for students in the community, where under her guidance, students receive extra language arts instruction in the morning and experience the fun of summer camp in the afternoon. She volunteers her time to coordinate, plan and execute the camp. She also works to run fundraisers to provide students with free meals and snacks, bus transportation, field trips and provide numerous books for participating students. Her fundraising efforts ensure that the program remains entirely free for the students. Outside of her commitment to the program, Maija works as part of the Oakwood team to implement the extended day program where additional math and reading support are offered.
Maija Denson – you play a critical role in the academic achievement and success of the students of Oakwood Elementary School. Your perseverance does not go unnoticed and for these reasons and more the Board is honored to recognize you Educator of the Month for April 2019. Congratulations!
2017 Teacher of the Year
Degrees and Certifications:
2017-2018 Maryland State Teacher of the Year
STEM Teacher, South River High School
“The most important thing I can do to help a student achieve is to help that student understand that they have somebody caring about them, somebody wanting them to be successful. That starts with relationships. I am truly blessed to work at South River High School where we have a principal and administrative staff who believe in and value the power of relationships.” Learn more about Josh Carroll.