TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTHI) - A famous Egyptian choreographer once said, "Dance is the mathematics of the soul." That's exactly how one Terre Haute teacher thinks.
Imagine learning your math lesson through dance steps.
That's one of many reasons why Sarah Scott Middle School's Andrea Lugar is a 2021 Golden Apple award winner.
If you walk into Lugar's 7th-grade math classroom, you will see students dancing. She has transformed her room into a coordinate plane, with the students representing the points on a graph.
This is Lugar's 18th year as a teacher and her fifth at Sarah Scott. Her unique math curriculum is a big hit.
"I love when I can get them up and moving around, and I love when, ya know, we play Jenga for math problems or we break out the Nerf blasters and answer math questions with them. Just seeing that math doesn't have to be so boring. They're so much more willing to work for me, and with me, because they see I'm willing to work for them and with them," Lugar told us.
Lugar works hard to help math come alive for these teenagers. She works just as hard building relationships with her kids and building confidence.
"They can't start believing in themselves until they find that faith and belief in me. They need to know that I see them and hear them and value them and believe in them before they can start seeing that in themselves," Lugar told us.
"Sarah Scott is a hidden jewel, I think in the Vigo County School Corporation. Every one of our teachers puts forth effort every day to see our students and to reach them," Principal Scotia Brown said.
Lugar told us she learns just as much from the students as they do from her, and it's the little moments that keep her going. She says winning a Golden Apple is one of the biggest moments in her career.
"I have literally dreamt of this award, and I still sorta have to pinch myself and realize that is really my name on that thing," Lugar said.
Her husband won a Golden Apple in Vigo County 10 years ago, and she says she's always dreamt of the time they could take a picture together holding their Golden Apples.