Kansas Master Teacher Award Program
Hays High School
USD 489, Hays
“Believe it or not, some students are not excited to learn mathematics,” states Mrs. Lisa Colwell. As one student writes, “How anyone can get excited about trig functions, I will never know – but Mrs. Colwell does. And something about that excitement always seemed to spread to her classes, because as long as she was eager to teach, students were eager to learn.”
Her example has led others – including young women – to not only go into teaching, but to become math teachers. “(In college) my education and psychology classes told me that girls were typically better at English and boys were better at math and science,” writes a former student. “I thought, ‘Mrs. Colwell never let on that I wasn’t supposed to be good at math.’ It was then that I really understood what she had done for me and what it really took to be a great teacher.”
An award-winning teacher with 26 years of experience and active member of her community, Mrs. Colwell became a national board certified teacher in 2002. Ms. Colwell is in her 13th year of teaching math at Hays High School. Previously she taught for 13 years in Victoria, Kansas. She received her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Fort Hays State University.