GMS Teacher of Year makes science fun

Published 12:00 am Saturday, March 26, 2005

The world of science is a fascinating and fun one. That’s the lesson Kim Bowen, Greenville Middle School’s Teacher of the Year and Science Department Chair for the school, strives to bring home to her students each day they walk into her classroom.

&uot;I love kids. They make you feel young. You can keep in touch with everything that’s current – music, popular stars. I loved it when Christa McAuliffe said, ‘I touch the future, I teach.’ Teachers have so much power over what is to come – we just don’t realize it,&uot; stresses Bowen.

Bowen, who grew up in Mobile, has lived in Greenville since her teens. Her dad grew up in McKenzie while her mom hails from the Camellia City.

A student at Mobile’s Faith Academy until 11th grade, Bowen transferred to Greenville High for her junior year, before going on to graduate from Greenville Academy.

This top teacher recalls with fondness Mr. Don Corley, her high school English teacher, and one of her major role models as an educator.

&uot;I still remember him talking about going back to school and still taking classes. He made learning interesting. Coach Lloyd Skoda, my high school biology teacher, was the first one to make science interesting and fun for me. He really related the subject content to real life. They both inspired me to want to become a teacher and they are still actively involved in education,&uot; says Bowen.

Bowen earned her Associate Degree in Science from Lurleen B. Wallace Junior College, with her Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees in Elementary Education earned at Auburn University in Montgomery.

Just as she is happy to acknowledge teachers like Corley and Skoda for their positive influence on her life, Bowen finds great satisfaction when her former students come back to see her and say, &uot;thanks.&uot;

&uot;It’s also great to see students you have previously taught and they remember who you are – even after they are married and have children of their own.&uot;

Of course, there are tremendous challenges that come along with the intangible rewards of teaching.

&uot;Making time for paperwork, getting parents involved and motivated to stay involved in their children’s education…No Child Left Behind. It’s tough sometimes,&uot; admits the teacher.

When she’s not sharing the wizardry of science with her students at GMS, Bowen is serving as the Builder’s Club Co-Building Coordinator, Parent Involvement Chair, Scholars Bowl Sponsor and continuing her work on the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards Certification.

She also serves as vice-president of the Alpha Delta Kappa Mu teaching fraternity.

Bowen, married to her high school sweetheart, Tommy Bowen of Fort Deposit, has three sons: Trey, 14, Reid, 11 and Sam, age six. She is an active member of Southside Baptist Church where she sings in the choir and performs solos.

As for leisure time, the busy educator, wife and mother quips, &uot;What leisure time?&uot; before responding with a smile.

&uot;Reading a good mystery book, listening to all types of music, cross-stitching, taking the boys all over town for baseball, guitar lessons – just being with my family, I guess.&uot;