Originally published Tuesday, December 5, 2017 at 03:24p.m.

CAMP VERDE – For the past few years, Peggy Dickey has been involved with Camp Verde Unified School District’s Fifth Day programs.

Known as Friday Camps, the purpose of the Friday program is to make learning fun, so fun that children come to school on Friday because they want to be there.

Since July 27, Dickey has served as the Fifth Day Program Coordinator. Other positions Dickey has held since she joined the district in August 2010 include Title 1 Reading Aide, Math tutor, Cyber Security Instructor, Lead Robotics Coach, Refocus and Responsibility Aide (detention room), and substitute teacher.

A funny thing happened on the way to Dickey becoming an educator.

She graduated from the University of California at Irvine with a Bachelor of Arts degree in criminology.

Now, Dickey couldn’t imagine not being at Camp Verde Unified.

“If I were not an educator, I would probably be a stay-at-home mom who volunteers at the school,” Dickey says. “I knew that I wanted to become an educator the first day I tried substitute teaching. Surprisingly, I really liked it and the students seemed to like me too. The light bulb went off and it just clicked for me.”

TEACHING STYLE

“I love Problem Based Learning, PBL, where we use real life, open-ended problems to solve. I try not to give answers, but rather guide the students to find the answers themselves through logic, reason and research. This develops patience within them and they experience a sense of accomplishment.”

NOTABLE

“Nominated in October 2017 by the Northern Arizona Professional Women’s Group for the 2017 Making A Difference Award.

“I don’t know if I’ll win, but I’m super honored to even be nominated.”

QUOTABLE

“I enjoy being an educator because I love the possibility of inspiring a passion for learning in students that may one day lead them to a rewarding and successful career in the future.

“One of my AHA moments was when I realized that even though some kids click at a slower pace, they can usually learn complex things if we are patient in teaching them and give them extra time to learn at their own pace.

“This is extremely rewarding work for me.”

DID YOU KNOW?

“I originally didn’t want to be an educator for fear of coming across students like myself when I was young (not good). I was pressured into substitute teaching by a relative and the desire to be with my kids at school. Once I tried it, I discovered I loved it! I feel now that being involved in education is the best, most rewarding job I’ve ever had. Now, I believe I will continue doing this even after my kids go to college.”

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