New English teacher Deneen Stuczynski enocurages students to use critical thinking skills

English teacher Deneen Stuczynski sits at her desk, waiting for students to enter her classroom. Stuczynski has been teaching English for 15 years and is excited to join MSDs staff this year, where she hopes to positively impact students lives.
English teacher Deneen Stuczynski sits at her desk, waiting for students to enter her classroom. Stuczynski has been teaching English for 15 years and is excited to join MSD’s staff this year, where she hopes to positively impact students’ lives.
Morgan Stott

A teacher describes in great detail the process of writing an essay, breaking it down into simple, understandable steps. As she explains to her class what makes for a good hook, she dives into an in-depth description of what three body paragraphs should comprise of. In an attempt to help students succeed in her class and beyond, Deneen Stuczynski is dedicated to being there for her students and supporting them in any way that she can.

Stuczynski is a new teacher at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Before coming to MSD, she taught at Cypress Bay High School in Weston, Florida for seven years and instructed through the Cambridge Program. According to the Cambridge Program’s official website, it is a high level program that includes “in-depth exams that make learning English enjoyable, effective and rewarding.”

Stuczynski attended college at Florida State University before moving to Arizona, where she worked as a substitute teacher. Substituting made her realize how much she enjoyed being around students and teaching.

After she was a substitute teacher, Stuczynski was a financial advisor. The part of the job she enjoyed most was working with, connecting with and educating co-workers and clients on different products. In 2007 when the housing market crashed, Stuczynski decided that she finally wanted to pursue a career in education.

Story continues below advertisement

Although being a teacher is not always an easy job, Stuczynski has found that the knowledge that she has an influence on her students’ lives is what makes the occasional stress worth it.

“[Knowing I have an influence on students is] what motivates me to keep teaching because it’s not an easy job,” Stuczynski said. “I feel like if I care and connect with my students it keeps me motivated to come back… I feel like I impact a good majority [of students], enough to keep coming back to keep doing what I’m doing.”

Stuczynski has always had a passion for English, having loved reading and writing ever since she was young. This was another significant factor that contributed to her wanting to become a teacher. After all, the career was a perfect fit for her, allowing her to instruct others on a subject she greatly enjoys.

In addition to English, Stuczynski has always loved being around people. She enjoys sharing her passions and work ethic with those around her and works hard to make an impact on her students’ lives. She cares for each of her students deeply and her ultimate goal as a teacher is to make sure that they feel supported and valued.

“I think that it’s important that my students know that I love them and I don’t say that as a line,” Stuczynski said. “I want them to be successful and if I’m harder on them or I expect more from them it’s because I care.”

Although Stuczynski has taught freshmen before, she only ever did so through the Cambridge Program. Therefore, teaching honors and regular ninth grade English classes has been a big adjustment. Still, she is extremely happy to be working with MSD students.

In spite of the fact that there are still plenty of new procedures that she is trying to get used to around MSD, Stuczynski is excited to see how the school operates. Currently, she is in the process of adjusting and getting acclimated to the basics, such as who to ask if she needs a lightbulb changed or has a computer problem.

“I’ve been able to figure these things out because everyone’s been very supportive… but just getting familiar with who to ask for what is the biggest adjustment I think,” Stuczynski said.

Stuczynski has been pleasantly surprised by how connected and welcoming MSD’s staff is. She felt comfortable here right away, particularly because several teachers she knew prior work at MSD. Her children attended MSD as well, so she had an idea of what to expect, making the transition to teaching here that much easier.

When teaching, Stuczynski tries to add things to her curriculum that other educators may not, such as activities that involve the use of critical thinking skills. She does this in an effort to help them become higher level thinkers who are more able to thrive in the real world.

“I try to provide critical thinking opportunities that go beyond just the subject matter, so that they can learn to look at things in multiple ways rather than just one single way,” Stuczynsky said.

Stuczynsky is overjoyed to be teaching at MSD and is thrilled to be joining the community she has experienced so far. During this school year, she is looking forward to helping her students develop a better understanding of English, while leaving what she hopes is a positive impact on their lives.

Leave a Comment
About the Contributor
Morgan Stott
Morgan Stott, Reporter
Morgan Stott is a freshman at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. She enjoys going to the beach, reading and hanging out with her friends.
Donate to Eagle Eye News
Our Goal

Your donation will support the student journalists of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

Navigate Left
Navigate Right
Donate to Eagle Eye News
Our Goal

Comments (0)

All Eagle Eye News Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *