Wednesday, November 27, 2013
Marion Lovenshimer, 59, of Summerville has been helping special children for 37 years. Growing up in Kansas, she graduated from Emporia State University with a BS in Elementary Education with a minor in Special Education. She taught for eight years in Kansas then married and moved to Bristol, TN where she taught for four years at a Catholic elementary school. She and her husband then moved again, for his job, to Morganton, NC where they stayed for 20 years and she taught both junior high and elementary school.
In 2008, her husband’s work brought her to Summerville and she began her career at Eagle Nest Elementary School where she teaches a cross category class of children grades 1-5.
Her students may have learning disabilities, some are on the autism spectrum, some are health impaired and some have speech and language delays. They are all special, she says.
In addition to her teaching she is the Relay for Life chair as she was in North Carolina, on the Positive Behaviors Interventions and Supports committee, has been a mentor for new teachers and, in North Carolina, was county Teacher of the Year in 2003. She was also the PTA Teacher of the Year at Eagle Nest and has been nominated many times for school Teacher of the Year.
And that’s not all. She has been a Team Leader, is on the Student Success Team and is a member of Alpha Delta Kappa – the teaching sorority.
Currently, she says, her professional goal is trying to keep up with all the major changes Common Core has brought. Because she teaches cross category, this means she has to learn the new standards for each of the major subjects – reading, writing and math – for each grade level she teaches – first through fifth.
“I also have to keep up with the ever changing technology and software,” she laughs, shaking her head.
When not on the education treadmill, she enjoys spending time with her husband, Robert and is the proud mom of Matthew, 26, and Joseph, 23. Both sons live and work in North Carolina.
At home though, is Bella, and American Eskimo dog.
“I love going to the beach, reading, kayaking and camping,” she says.
“I also love to cook and it is so exciting, both boys are fabulous cooks – they come home and we cook together!”
She says she loves trying out new recipes and although her husband is not as interested in cooking, he loves the results of her forays into new epicurean territory.
She “sometimes” likes to garden and do yard work.
“Oh, and I love to travel…even to the grocery store!”
Once very active in her church in North Carolina, she finds her weekends now are so full, it is difficult to take part in as many church activities.
“And I love, love, love Charleston. I am so amazed that the history and structures are still here…my family suggests I get a job as a tourist guide…I am always reading about it and visiting historic places.”
Her life vision, after she retires, is to stay busy by serving the community.
“I see myself as a professional volunteer…like Red Cross or Habitat…when needed you pick up and go.”
“I worked at the food bank this weekend,” she adds, “and it was really great. I see myself being really involved in some capacity.”
But that’s later. Now, it’s all about her students.
“School isn’t just a job. I’m invested in my kids in their lives. I think children need people who have high expectations of them.”