Teacher of the Week: Ralph shares love of education and nature with her students


When walking into the classroom of Nancy Ralph the first thing anyone would see is the saying “Start where you are, don’t stay there.”

It’s a phrase she keeps in mind every day while she is teaching her fourth grade students at Lamar Elementary, and to her, it’s one of the most valuable pieces of information she could share with her students.

“It means that we are all on a learning continuum,” said Ralph. “Each day, we begin at one point, but we move forward and keep on trying to learn something new.”

Holding that philosophy close for the 18 years she has been teaching, she looks at her students as a group of talented individuals that can help make her classroom richer, she said. Collaboration may be key, but she also aims to educate her students on the importance of remaining connected to nature.

Moving to the Rio Grande Valley from Wisconsin, she has great appreciation for the natural beauty of the region and tries to emphasize the importance of appreciating their surroundings, she said. Through outdoor class time to tying nature back to their reading assignment, she is always on the look to find ways to make nature more accessible to her class.

Growing up in a family with eight siblings, it was a natural transition for her to teach. During her life, she always took on the role of helping others when assistance was needed.

“It’s always what I wanted to do,” said Ralph. “I was in the middle so you’re always teaching someone what you’ve learned before.”

When not in her classroom, her love of nature continues as she takes any opportunity she can to hike or bike, she said. You can also find her at nature festivals in efforts to seek information she can share with her students.

7 thoughts on “Teacher of the Week: Ralph shares love of education and nature with her students

  1. We are so proud of Mrs.Ralph. She is truly an assest to the staff at Lamar Elementary and our students sure do reep the rewards of having such a passionate and masterful teacher.

  2. We are very proud to have Mrs. Ralph as a memeber of our staff at Lamar Elementary. She is a true asset to our team and our students sure reep the rewards of having such a passionate and masterful Teacher.

  3. Congratulations Mrs. Ralph,
    Walking into your classroom is like walking into another world. A world of learning at it’s best. Your students are so lucky to have you as their teacher, always challenging them and getting them to be the best that they can be. As always a great job.

  4. I would like to congratulate you Mrs. Ralph for being teacher of the week. It came as no surprise because truly you are a great teacher and asset to Lamar Elementary. As a former parent I want to give you thanks for building strong foundations and improving academic achievement, focuses and social interactions in the students. The impact of your teaching is so significant. I truly can’t thank you enough and will be forever grateful. Congratulations!!!

  5. It would not surprise anyone who knows my wife to learn how much time, energy and thought she puts into her two true passions in life = mother and teacher. She is totally committed as an educator and the students who pass through her classroom will ALWAYS be “her” students. Congratulations to Mrs. Ralph!

  6. Everyone in Nancy’s family knows how much she loves being a teacher. Her world has always been centered on making learning enjoyable. She started to develop her skills as a young woman and mother and carried them on to her present job. I am so proud of her accomplishments, and am glad to see this recognition for her.
    Mary Jane Jacobus

  7. Mrs. Ralph from the moment I walked into your classroom I knew that you had a different style of teaching and energy as a teacher and person. I congratulate you for doing what you love and sharing with the students your energy, wisdom and encouragement. May you always keep an open heart and mind for what you love. Congratulations again for a well deserved honor.

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