Loeb Prize for teaching excellence


Mehlville School District teachers, from left, Stephanie Allen, Tammy Popp and Sandra Turner are pictured at the awards ceremony for the 2009 St. Louis Sci-ence Center/Carol B. and Jerome T. Loeb Prize for Excellence in Teaching Sci-ence and Mathematics. Popp was recognized as the winner of the Loeb Prize while Allen and Turner were two of the five award finalists.

Tammy Popp, an algebra and calculus teacher at Oakville Senior High School, was awarded the 2009 St. Louis Science Center/Carol B. and Jerome T. Loeb Prize for Excellence in Teaching Science and Mathematics during a ceremony last week at the Science Center.

The Loeb Prize is awarded each year to teachers who significantly enhance their students’ performances in the areas of science and mathematics.

“With today’s rapidly changing times, I believe we, as teachers, must adapt to our students’ needs to ensure that all students learn and are successful,” Popp said in a Mehlville School District news release. “We can help achieve this by providing engaging activities, concrete representations to help explain the abstract, and have fun doing it.”

Of the five finalists for the award, three were Mehlville School District teachers.

Runners-up for the award included Oakville Senior High School Physics teacher Stephanie Allen and Washington Middle School math teacher Sandra Turner. Popp and the other finalists received cash prizes.

The nominees’ classes also were invited to accompany them to the Science Center for the awards ceremony.

“Teachers make a lasting impression on the lives of their students. By recognizing their professional successes, the Loeb Prize encourages teachers to have even more of an impact on their students through valuable classroom experience,” Mrs. Loeb stated in the release. “The prize is just one way we can acknowledge the men and women who motivate our youth by serving as educators, role models and mentors.”

“To ensure the success of our society, we must recognize and encourage those who inspire the younger generation,” stated Carol Valenta, assistant museum director for the Science Center. “It is critical for students to be excited about science, math and technology. The Loeb Prize honors the educators that work so hard to mold our future scientific leaders.”