Third Grade Teacher
Clover Avenue Elementary
Los Angeles Unified School District
Hailed as a "21st-century teacher for a 21st-century learner," Jackie Bonilla's third-grade classroom at Clover Avenue Elementary School is a success-based environment in which the fundamentals are taught in a hands-on, interdisciplinary manner. Consider Bonilla's role as curator of her classroom's “cultural museum” where she oversees the research of eight different cultures. Kids create artifacts and learn writing, social studies, technology and oral language skills while learning about their heritage. Beyond the museum, Bonilla employs a trove of tactics to challenge her children, including strategic grouping, thematic projects, game simulations, journaling and Claymation for creative story writing. Her other bona-fides: Bonilla hosts parent workshops, writes a weekly newsletter to keep moms and dads in the loop, and established science family evenings, to name a few.
Bonilla's talents are reflected in the success of her students. During the 2011-2012 school year when Bonilla taught third-graders, 87 percent scored proficient or above in English language arts on the California Standards Test (CST) and 97 percent scored proficient or above in math. Clover Avenue Elementary achieved an Academic Performance Index (API) score of 957 out of 1000, exceeding the statewide goal of 800. The campus was honored by the U.S. Department of Education as a 2012 National Blue Ribbon School.
A model leader in and outside the classroom, Bonilla is grade-level chair and Gifted And Talented Education (GATE)/Schools for Advanced Studies coordinator. She has increased the numbers of underrepresented student populations in GATE. She serves on the School Site Council and is a key member of the Blue Ribbon Nomination Application Writing Committee. Bonilla holds workshops for teachers, mentors beginning teachers, and successfully authors grants that send students on field trips or bring new resources to campus.