Fulton Homes Honors Phoenix Educator as 'Teacher of the Week'

Matthew Penland Shows Unwavering Commitment to His Students

Fulton Homes recognizes Matthew Penland as this week's 'Teacher of the Week' winner for his guidance in and out of the classroom. Students say Penland builds their confidence academically and socially. The sixth grade math teacher at Centennial Middle School in Ahwatukee was nominated by Laurie Jake, a student at the school.

She says Penland's love for teaching math helps student like her get interested in it as well. Jake says Penland introduces math concepts in a quirky, unforgettable way. She said Penland's lessons are hands-on projects that explore math in real-world applications. An example is his annual rocket car project. The students design, build and race CO2 powered rocket cars. This project not only gives students a chance to learn about diameter, speed and distance in a creative way, but helps them develop team and leadership skills as well.

Penland takes those leadership skills out of the classroom by coaching Centennial's Cross Country, Track and Softball teams. He is also the dee-jay for school dances and events. Students and parents say they appreciate Penland's extra service to the school. He even took his dedication one step further by starting a Saturday study group for students who need extra help with school work.

"Mr. Penland is a true leader in class and on campus," Jake said. "He wants us to succeed in school and learn how to do well even when we are not at school."

"Matthew Penland is an influential leader and is a perfect example for students to follow," Fulton Homes CEO Douglas Fulton said. "The commitment and enthusiasm he has for involvement with his students and the community set him apart from many others."

Fulton Homes invites students and peers across the Valley to recognize those teachers who make a difference in other's lives with the 12th Annual Fulton Homes Teacher of the Week program, in partnership with KNIX Country Radio. The popular program, which serves to honor outstanding educators, continues throughout the school year, ending in June of 2012.

Teachers nominated will be entered for a chance to win a prize package that includes $300 in cash plus prizes from Fulton Homes and the Dairy Council of Arizona. The winning teacher will be surprised and presented the award by KNIX radio personality, Carolyn Coffey. Recipients of the award will also be spotlighted on the KNIX Morning Show with Ben and Matt, where they will receive special recognition on their Friday show between 6:20 - 7:20 a.m.

At the end of the school year, in June of 2012, the 34 winning teachers will be honored at a special luncheon, where one outstanding teacher will be chosen as the Fulton Homes "Teacher of the Year." Students can nominate their favorite teacher for Fulton Homes' Teacher of the Week by submitting a brief form at any Fulton Homes location or online at knixcountry.com. Winners are chosen based on their commitment to education, career achievements and impact on students' lives.

For more information about Fulton Homes Teacher of the Week, visit www.fultonhomes.com and click on the Fulton Foundation link, or visit knixcountry.com, keyword "Teacher."

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