The Student News Site of University of Chicago Laboratory High School

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The Student News Site of University of Chicago Laboratory High School

U-High Midway

The Student News Site of University of Chicago Laboratory High School

U-High Midway

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Early childhood educator selected as finalist for award for excellence in teaching

Tracy+Aiden%2C+who+has+been+at+Lab+for+the+past+six+years+and+is+a+teacher+for+Nursery+3+through+kindergarten+students%2C+has+been+selected+as+a+finalists+for+the+Golden+Apple+Award+for+Excellence+in+Teaching.+
Evelyn Rumble
Tracy Aiden, who has been at Lab for the past six years and is a teacher for Nursery 3 through kindergarten students, has been selected as a finalists for the Golden Apple Award for Excellence in Teaching.

Tracy Aiden, a Laboratory Schools teacher for Nursery 3 through kindergarten students, has been selected as one of 30 finalists for the Golden Apple Award for Excellence in Teaching.

Winners are expected to be revealed in early May and will receive a $5,000 award along with a sabbatical opportunity at Northwestern University. 

Ms. Aiden, who has been a teacher at the Laboratory Schools for six years, credits her nomination to her students. 

“I couldn’t do a lot of what I do without the great kids in my class who were curious and wonder and want to make change, but also without the really great parents that I have in my classroom that are open and trust me to do what we need to do with their kids,” Ms. Aiden said.

In her time at Lab, Ms. Aiden has been a strong advocate for social justice. She uses her identity as a person of color to help students feel seen and recognized.

“I celebrate my Blackness in a way that I think validates how other people and other kids need to celebrate themselves as well,” she said. 

Ms. Aiden tries to prioritize students’ social and emotional development in the three years they spend in her classroom, and seeks to develop trust between her and her students. 

“They feel safe being able to take risks,” Ms. Aiden said, “so I feel like if we can create that kind of community in the classroom, where kids feel really good about who they are, then the learning is pretty easy.” 

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Sinziana Lazar
Sinziana Lazar, Reporter
Sinziana Lazar is a member of the Class of 2027. She began journalism in 2023 as a ninth grader. She plays violin in CYSO and is a member of the Robotics and Model UN teams.

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