2017 Elementary Mathematics Specialist Scholarship Recipient - Barbara Woodward Stamberg


My name is Barbara Woodward Stamberg and I currently teach fifth grade math at Daniel Morgan Intermediate School in Winchester, VA.  I always wanted to be a teacher from as far back as I can remember.  I simply loved school and loved to learn.  I love math and anything to do with numbers.  I was on another career path at a community college, due to the inability for my parents to afford to send me to a four-year school, and it was during this time, while I was taking an extra credit Calculus class, my math professor encouraged me to apply to the local college and seek out scholarships and aide.  I was accepted and was able to go to school and make my dreams become reality.  This is a story I share with each of my classes each and every year in hopes that they too will never give up on their dreams or that I may be that one person who makes a difference in their lives just as my math professor did for me.  I have had the opportunity to teach math and science in grades 5-8 over the past 18 years.  Fifth grade has been my longest standing position as I enter my 14th year as a fifth grade math teacher.  I am the fifth grade math lead teacher, conduct an after school math club, and Run Club coach for grades 5/6. 

I studied at Emory & Henry College where I earned a Bachelor of Art in Education in 1998. I am currently enrolled in the Mathematics Specialist Leader (K–8), Concentration in MEd Curriculum and Instruction program at George Mason University.   This opportunity was afforded to me through a local cohort for teachers.  I want to truly become a specialist in the area in which I am passionate about and be able to help teachers as well as students to the best of my ability. George Mason has an excellent program and I have gained so much from the courses I have already completed. I want to be the voice that changes the minds of how teachers teach math and students learn math.  Math needs to be taught conceptually early on and then broaden to a pictorial model that will lead to the abstract thinking that our students need to be great problem solvers in life.  I want to make an impact on the development and effectiveness of others.  I want to inspire colleagues and administration to make the necessary changes that our students deserve in math. 

My coursework has already enabled me to make changes in my own classroom teaching and those on my math team at my school.  I have accepted the role of math lead teacher for the 2017-18 school year and am excited to take on this leadership role in hopes of sharing what I am learning through this math program with all math teachers in my school.  We, together, can make a difference!  My coursework will provide me with both leadership classes as well as an in-depth knowledge of teaching math K-8 in a way that I wasn't taught.

I am currently halfway through George Mason’s Master’s Program and will be twenty years post college earning my master’s degree.  I am beyond excited about this opportunity and completely humbled and honored to be receiving the AMTE Elementary Mathematics Specialist Scholarship.  A huge thank you to your association for believing in me and its continued support of educators like myself so that we can continue to learn math and become math leaders!


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