SEVERE WX : Severe Thunderstorm Warning View Alerts

Golden Apple: Stephanie Nuckols

The pandemic meant schools shut down early last year, so we could not present the Golden Apple Awards in April like we normally do. But we did manage to surprise five teachers once school began this fall.

Posted: Oct 26, 2020 1:44 PM
Updated: Apr 30, 2021 9:03 AM

CLAY COUNTY, Ind. (WTHI) - There is an inspirational quote that says 'everyone who remembers his own education remembers teachers...not the methods and techniques. The teacher is the heart of the educational system."

WTHI-TV believes strongly in that philosophy. That's why we honor five teachers every year who are considered 'golden' by their students and peers.

The pandemic meant schools shut down early last year, so we could not present the Golden Apple Awards in April like we normally do. But we did manage to surprise five teachers once school began this fall.

We surprised the teachers this year outside, with masks on.

Our first teacher is from Clay County. Her name is Stephanie Nuckols. When we showed up at North Clay Middle School, the teacher was so shocked she didn't even take the award from us.

Nuckols will tell you her mission is to make English fun. She works very hard getting her 8th graders at North Clay Middle School ready for high school. She works to make her lesson plans something they can relate to and use in life.

"We did a lesson on writing an email and I said you have no idea how important this lesson is that I'm teaching because you're going to use it from now all the way to being an adult and you need to sound professional and it needs to be grammatically correct," Nuckols told us.

She says she makes a point to speak to every student in her classroom, and you'll often find her greeting kids in the hallway.

"It's so important to reach these kids and let them know that someone cares. Many of my students don't know where their next meal is um they're not getting the parental support for making their high school schedule or making decisions like that and from day one I try and make those connections with them and that they know for those 8 hours you're here I'm your family," Nuckols said.

She has been teaching for nearly 20 years, but only the last four at North Clay. She's clearly made a lasting impression in a short time.

"I would like to take a slice of my Golden Apple and give each one of them a slice because it's not me it's that I've had amazing kids that want to learn and they want to have a relationship with me...I'm getting emotional again...I just love my kids!" Nuckols told us.

She cares so much about her students, she couldn't let her 8th graders leave during a pandemic without a proper send-off. She organized a drive-by graduation of sorts.

It was a way to hug her students one final time before sending them off to high school.

"I must have made a difference somehow and if I can have every kid that enters my door grow either as a reader, grow as a writer, grow as a speaker, but more importantly grow as a person..then that's going to fuel my fire the rest of the way out," Nuckols told us.

Our next Golden Apple will take us across state lines.

Terre Haute
Partly Cloudy
85° wxIcon
Hi: 89° Lo: 73°
Feels Like: 93°
Robinson
Mostly Cloudy
79° wxIcon
Hi: 90° Lo: 72°
Feels Like: 83°
Indianapolis
Mostly Cloudy
85° wxIcon
Hi: 89° Lo: 74°
Feels Like: 93°
Rockville
Partly Cloudy
81° wxIcon
Hi: 88° Lo: 74°
Feels Like: 91°
Casey
Partly Cloudy
84° wxIcon
Hi: 88° Lo: 74°
Feels Like: 94°
Brazil
Partly Cloudy
85° wxIcon
Hi: 89° Lo: 73°
Feels Like: 93°
Marshall
Partly Cloudy
85° wxIcon
Hi: 88° Lo: 72°
Feels Like: 93°
Scattered storms with heavy rain possible
WTHI Planner
WTHI Temps
WTHI Radar

WTHI Events

 

Illinois Coronavirus Cases

(Widget updates once daily at 7 p.m. CT)

Cases: 1415572

Reported Deaths: 25853
CountyCasesDeaths
Cook56308410559
DuPage937531321
Will781251042
Lake692061027
Kane60105816
Winnebago34719524
Madison32433533
St. Clair30073526
McHenry29590299
Peoria23726346
Champaign21601158
Sangamon19672245
McLean18864194
Tazewell17508308
Rock Island15398329
Kankakee14754224
Kendall1349999
LaSalle12968254
Macon11193215
DeKalb10286122
Vermilion10247154
Adams9635128
Williamson8165138
Whiteside7249174
Boone694280
Ogle629884
Grundy605879
Clinton591993
Coles5872101
Knox5735157
Jackson546465
Henry516070
Macoupin498790
Livingston494394
Woodford492683
Stephenson488186
Franklin487879
Effingham483274
Marion4782118
Jefferson4668123
Monroe452394
Randolph432587
Lee424054
Morgan413793
Fulton410959
Logan407366
Christian394875
Bureau386187
Montgomery385274
Iroquois330168
Perry328662
Fayette326856
McDonough305751
Jersey279552
Saline272057
Douglas263736
Union250241
Lawrence245027
Shelby236138
Crawford219026
Bond213624
Cass210727
Carroll204937
Pike201453
Ford194950
Hancock194132
Clark190734
Wayne190153
Warren186750
Jo Daviess183524
Richland181740
White180626
Edgar179842
Washington169625
Moultrie168128
Mason164247
De Witt161429
Piatt156314
Johnson155416
Clay155043
Greene153534
Mercer152434
Wabash148612
Massac143740
Cumberland131119
Menard128412
Jasper116918
Marshall110819
Hamilton90316
Schuyler8147
Brown8116
Pulaski7437
Stark66425
Edwards63612
Calhoun5422
Henderson53414
Gallatin5064
Scott5051
Putnam4943
Alexander48911
Hardin39612
Pope3404
Unassigned662433
Out of IL150

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

(Widget updates once daily at 8 p.m. ET)

Cases: 768624

Reported Deaths: 13993
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion1055891807
Lake569801031
Allen43032699
St. Joseph37344568
Hamilton37335426
Elkhart29783470
Tippecanoe23503230
Vanderburgh23240405
Porter19580327
Johnson18843392
Hendricks18089323
Madison13575347
Clark13552198
Vigo12869256
LaPorte12578225
Monroe12575178
Delaware11155198
Howard10693237
Kosciusko9792124
Hancock8761150
Bartholomew8274157
Warrick8084157
Floyd8043182
Grant7378181
Wayne7239201
Boone7211105
Morgan6924143
Marshall6345117
Dubois6283118
Cass6096112
Dearborn602178
Noble600890
Henry5958111
Jackson517277
Shelby511598
Lawrence4928127
Gibson463696
Montgomery459292
DeKalb456785
Clinton456055
Harrison454077
Huntington417882
Whitley416745
Steuben411260
Miami406073
Jasper401655
Knox388691
Putnam385762
Wabash370384
Adams353856
Ripley351971
Jefferson343487
White340154
Daviess3089100
Wells304081
Greene295185
Decatur292693
Fayette286564
Posey282635
Scott281058
LaGrange277772
Clay274949
Washington254637
Randolph247783
Jennings239749
Spencer238731
Fountain235850
Starke229959
Owen222959
Sullivan221643
Fulton208945
Jay203032
Carroll197722
Orange191756
Perry189939
Vermillion181144
Rush177627
Tipton173347
Franklin172535
Parke155916
Pike142534
Blackford138032
Pulaski123748
Newton123336
Benton109715
Brown106243
Crawford105816
Martin92515
Warren87915
Switzerland8378
Union73610
Ohio58411
Unassigned0429