Erin Butler recognized as December 2014 Teacher of the Month
Jan 5, 2015
Our December Teacher of the Month does it all - raises cattle, plays the organ, and teaches our high school students chemistry, physics, and Cutting Edge Science. She also serves as the PA Cyber Science Club advisor.
Learn more about Erin Butler and what makes her tick.
Years at PA Cyber:
This is my ninth year at PA Cyber. It is my 12th year teaching overall. I taught three years in a brick and mortar public school before coming to PA Cyber, and the change has been wonderful.
Why become a teacher?
I would say the largest attraction to teaching for me was that I really have a deep love for science. I am very drawn to thinking about science and just observing it every day in the world. I wanted to go into a career that would allow me to deal with science and ideas every day. Teaching seemed to be a natural fit as it is a job that works well with a family and allowed me to share science with others.
What’s one of your favorite memories from your career at PA Cyber?
I would say my favorite experience at PA Cyber is not a specific moment, but rather the everyday interaction with the very high caliber students I get in the advanced sciences. It is very rewarding to teach in an environment where my students are highly capable, highly motivated, and yet I can still have the flexibility to adapt my class to their strengths. Cyber school is the only place that this exists today in public education and I treasure that I get to experience it.
If, you were to pressure me for just one memory, I would say representing PA Cyber at my local fair in Findlay Township. Getting to explain to my neighbors and community how PA Cyber works and to see both the amazement and excitement in some of them that public education could be so different and in some ways so much better than what they were used to has been very fun.
If you could give a future educator one piece of advice what would it be?
I think the biggest piece of advice that I would want to be told if I was graduating today would be that education is going to change very, very fast. It already has, and the pace is quickening. You have to be ready for that. When I first entered education, I never dreamed that I would be teaching virtual classrooms of advanced science to students over a computer. Now, I wonder how much more my job will change. If you are thinking about getting into education, don’t assume that you will be doing and teaching the way that you are trained to in college. You might be doing something vastly different, and hopefully far better and more effective.
When you’re not at school you can be found:
When I am not at school I primarily can be found raising my three children. Church and faith are also a large part of my life. I am highly involved in my church, where I serve as the organist and the keyboardist for the praise band. My husband and I also run a small farm where we raise black angus cattle, breed german shepherds, and have “Cut your Own Christmas” trees. For fun, I love being out in nature and enjoy hiking, camping canoeing, and travel.
Casie Colalella / firstname.lastname@example.org
About PA Cyber
Serving students in kindergarten through 12th grade, the Pennsylvania Cyber Charter School (PA Cyber) is one of the largest, most experienced, and most successful online public schools in the nation. PA Cyber's online learning environments, personalized instructional methods, and choices of curricula connect Pennsylvania students and their families with state-certified and highly-qualified teachers, and rich academic content that is aligned to state standards. Founded in 2000, PA Cyber is headquartered in Midland (Beaver County) and maintains a network of support offices throughout the state. As a public school, PA Cyber is open for enrollment by any school-age child residing in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and does not charge tuition to students or families.