Peoria teachers recognized by Peoria Kiwanis

By WEEK Producer

March 27, 2013 Updated Mar 27, 2013 at 9:46 PM CDT

PEORIA, Ill. -- Speaker John Brady compared what teachers do to a nesting doll. How they reach inside their students and pull things out that perhaps even the student didn't realize was there.

"I think its really true. The idea that beyond the surface there's so much more and everyone has a different way of teaching and seeing things," explained Joe Mulcahey, who teaches social studies at Peoria Notre Dame.

Mulcahey is one of five Peoria teachers who received the Russell and Gordon Peters Outstanding High School Teachers Award, presented annually by the Kiwanis Club of Peoria.

Richwoods' Juli Cranwill has been teaching special education for 20 years and was touched by the recognition.

"When I first started teaching I never would have suspected that your co-workers would pick someone in special education to be their outstanding teacher of the year. Its an amazing and humbling feeling," Cranwill said.

Manual Academy's Mary Stecher, Peoria High orchestra director Jason Warner, and Peoria Christian history teacher Luke Baker were the other three recipients.

Baker's a throwback, setting aside time for his students to put away their technology and interact and learn by playing old fashioned board games.

"(We) have face to face time and to use the same entertainment they get playing a video game from playing a board game like we all did before we had computers and iPhone," Baker said.

For those students what's old is new.