Eastwood Middle School teacher Mireya Perez has been named the 2018 Outstanding Seventh-Grade Texas History Teacher by The Daughters of the Republic of Texas (DRT).
“I am very humbled to receive this recognition,” said Perez, who has taught at Eastwood Middle School for 13 years. “My objective is to change the perception that history is boring through a storytelling approach, and by allowing students to experience engaging and real-life activities.”
DRT officials said Perez was selected as this year’s winner after demonstrating how her instruction has enhanced her seventh-grade students’ interest in the early history of Texas – either by using creative ideas or manipulatives.
As the winner, Perez will receive a $750 award and a special plaque at the 2018 DRT Convention, which takes place May 19 in Dallas. In addition, Eastwood Middle School will receive $1,000 as part of the award.
In her winning application, Perez wrote: “I encourage my students to think like historians. As they uncover the advancements made in the United States, I encourage them to apply (this) to their personal lives by understanding that even through defeat, personal victories can be achieved.
“My calling in education gave me the title of a history teacher,” she wrote. “With that title, it is my responsibility to prepare young boys and girls to become determined, honest, and active participants of the community in which they live, regardless of their future job title.”
To be considered for the award, teachers were asked to submit letters of recommendation; teaching philosophy and instructional method; curriculum vitae/résumé; innovations conceived and executed for seventh-graders; and the response of the students to their local DRT chapter The DRT maintains 106 local chapters, divided in 10 districts.
DRT is the oldest patriotic women’s organization in Texas, and one of the oldest in the nation.
Founded in 1891, the DRT’s mission is to perpetuate the memory and spirit of those who achieved and maintained the independence of Texas; provide educational programs in coordination with school districts and the Texas Education Agency, as well as public programs; encourage research into early Texas records and the publication of these historic records, and preserve historic documents; and secure and memorialize historic sites.