STILLWATER, Okla. - It's not often that a ninth grade teacher can be in utter shock, but that's exactly what happened when Heather Anderson was honored during our 'Thankful 4 Teachers' program.
Anderson teaches ninth-grade English at Stillwater Junior High, and is known for staying after hours to coach students in mock trials. Even though she put in a lot of extra work, she doesn't earn a dime for her time.
Claire Grace, one of Anderson's students, nominated for her for KFOR's 'Thankful 4 Teachers' campaign.
"Out of all the people that I've ever had teach me, she has every excuse not to put in 100 percent. She has a small child, she just finished her master's degree, and yet she still goes above and beyond. As well as that, she really invests herself where her students crave learning. They never know what she's going to do next. One day she came to school dressed as Edgar Allen Poe, which is kind of crazy. We didn't even recognize her."
Grace is in high school now, but still participates in Anderson's mock trial program, which she created single-handedly for the entire school district.
Grace accompanied News 4 and Air Comfort Solutions for the big surprise. Anderson's reaction was utter shock.
"Oh my gosh! Oh my gosh! Oh my gosh!" she said. "I should've worn waterproof mascara!"
"This wouldn't be possible if you weren't the person that you are," Grace said.
Anderson's husband is a pastor, and she implements faith into her passion for each student.
"I stand over every single desk before the kiddos come in and I pray over every one of my students, prayer is a big part of my day," she said.
Anderson says she plans to put the $5,000 toward her 3-year-old son's college fund.
"I'm just very grateful. I'm full of gratitude," Anderson said, beaming.
During the next two weeks, KFOR and Air Comfort Solutions will honor seven other teachers with a $5,000 check.
'Thankful 4 Teachers' is sponsored by Air Comfort Solutions.