Q2, Western Security Bank, City Brew Coffee, and Education Foundation for Billings Public Schools have teamed up for "One Class at a Time." It's a program that recognizes teachers who go above and beyond to help their students.
Meet Des Detling, a 4th-grade teacher who excels at creating a welcoming and comfortable space for students, especially when they're having a rough day.
"Sometimes you just need that warm feeling like everything's going to be okay even if it's for 30 seconds," said Mrs. Detling. "A lot of them will come up and say, 'Can I give you a hug?' Or, 'Can I just come up and stand next to you?' And sometimes it's just that warm body, just to stand by to feel like somebody's there on your side and they're there for you."
And if a student is having a bad day, Mrs. Detling has an approach that works well to get them back on a positive track.
"Challenging them. A lot of times the kids come in and they've had a rough morning or they feel like they can't keep pushing, they can't do something, and offering them small steps to be able to challenge themselves with. You can make small steps. You don't have to make a giant leap at first, but you can take a small step. Putting that challenge in front of them and watching them light up when they do meet those is probably my favorite part of seeing when they light up and go, 'Oh my gosh, I did it.'"
What does she hope her students take from her as they move on to the next grade level and beyond?
"I think the biggest thing that I want them to leave with is that they are a special and unique child and that they can bring anything that they want to our community whether it be that they want to grow up to be a video game maker or the next president. Whatever their ambitions, that they're capable of doing it, they have the skills. They just need to keep working and keep pushing themselves."
For being a constant calming figure in the halls of Bench Elementary, Mrs. Detling was presented with a $500 grant from the Education Foundation for Billings Public Schools, proudly sponsored by Western Security Bank, and a $150 gift card from City Brew Coffee.
If you would like to nominate a teacher, click HERE and tell us who you think we should honor next.