2013 Teacher of the Year Finalist - Rebecca Kim

Rebecca Kim
Valley Oaks Elementary School
Second-Grade Teacher

Education: Texas State Board Certifications (5), Elementary Comprehensive (Grade 1-6, EC-4)/Professional Development/English as a Second Language/Gifted and Talented Supplemental University of Texas at Austin, Bachelor of Science in Applied Learning and Development, 2002

Teaching History: Valley Oaks Elementary School, Second Grade, 2010-Present Spring Branch ISD, Fifth Grade, Substitute, 2009-2010 Thornwood Elementary School, First Grade, 2003-2009 Jade Tree Project, Xining, Qinghai (Tibet), Adult English Teacher, 2004-2005 Crème de la Crème School, Prekindergarten, 2003

In her own words: “I have cultivated a passion for exploring the world and believe strongly in exposing my students to a greater global view. First thing my students learn is that being different is what makes us beautiful. Acceptance of their peers paves the way to appreciating one another’s differences, whether it’s cultural, status, emotional or physical. We are family.”

“I do not think it too much to hope to see my students become a Martin Luther King, Rosa Parks or Albert Einstein in this world. I know I can stay current on the best methodologies, and I will teach the curriculum successfully – but what I deem true success is to educate my students’ hearts.”

In the words of others: “She is skilled at the craft of teaching, she is patient and optimistic with her students, and she is a wonderful team member. I have received numerous comments from parents who had their children in her classroom. All of them have wonderful things to say about her teaching style and her ability to communicate effectively with both children and adults.” Valley Oaks Elementary Principal Gary Henry

“Last year, Ms. Kim was assigned a very difficult class with several challenging students. It was a long year for Ms. Kim with many ups and downs. I remember sitting down with her one day closer to the end of the school year, and discussing the year as a whole. I will never forget Rebecca telling me how grateful she was for the experience and sharing with me that what the year had reaffirmed for her as a teacher was the importance of having love, compassion and passion for all your students.” Valley Oaks Elementary Assistant Principal Morella Tapia

Selected Honors, Recognitions and Activities:
  • SBISD Second Grade Language Arts Curriculum Developer Grade Level Chair, Second Grade Team, 2012-2013
  • Teacher Mentor, University of Houston, Fall 2011
  • School Bell Award Winner, 2012, and Nominee, 2011
  • Who’s Who of American Women, 2008
  • Who’s Who Among America’s Teachers and Educators Award, 2006-2007
  • Spring Branch Education Foundation, J. Landon Short Mini Grant for Education, 2005-2006 & 2007-2008
  • Keep Houston Beautiful Grant Award for butterfly garden, 2007-2008


Spring Branch ISD