Leslie Lamberth: The journey of a teacher

Leslie Lamberth graduated from NC State with a bachelors in science education. She has taught at LRHS for the past five years. (Photo used by permission of Leslie Lamberth)

Mrs. Lamberth’s passion for teaching helps her be the best teacher she can be. Lamberth has taught for 11 years, including 5 at Leesville. While most students think of her as quiet and kind, she has proven to be a knowledgeable and effective teacher. Here is her journey.

The beginning

Growing up in Elizabeth City, an average-sized town on the Albermarle Sound, Lamberth had a quiet upbringing. There was only one high school for the entire town, and Lamberth participated in various activities including band and dance. She also helped out around the hog farm her family owned and operated.

Leslie Lamberth grew up on a hog farm. There, she helped her family raise pigs. (Photo used by permission of Leslie Lamberth)

Lamberth grew up in a close-knit community where everybody knew everybody — including her teacher. “I had a really good first grade teacher. She was really nice and cared for me and other students in the class… she checked up on me throughout school and always made sure I was doing well,” said Lamberth.

That first grade teacher was the one that inspired her to go into teaching. “I never thought of being a teacher, but I really admired her and from that decided that was what I wanted to do,” said Lamberth.

While she knew from an early age she wanted to be teacher, Lamberth’s road to teaching was not always clearcut. “I started off saying ‘I want to teach first grade.’ Then I went to second grade, and said ‘I kinda like older kids, lemme teach second grade,’ and then eventually I got up to high school and knew that was what I wanted to teach,” said Lamberth.

 

The transition

Lamberth was able to go to college at NC State through a Teaching Fellow scholarship and paid the rest of her tution through hard work. “I grew up on a farm and raised pigs, [and] I showed them for livestock money,” said Lamberth.

Once in college, she was excited at the prospect of being a math teacher.

However, Lamberth shortly realized she had a change of heart. “I got to my methods classes for teaching, and I thought math was really boring to teach. There was no way I could sit and watch kids do equations all day. So I wanted to do something that was a little more interactive, and I had taken a biology class at college and really enjoyed it, and I thought that’s where I wanna go with this. So I changed my mind my freshman year as to what I was going to teach. I was able to switch my schedule around to be able to go with science and teaching,” said Lamberth.

 

The career

Lamberth currently teaches AP environmental science, but her other passion is biology. She loves being outdoors to explore, and see the organisms she has learned about in real life. (Photo used by permission of Leslie Lamberth)

In 2007, Lamberth graduated from NC State with a bachelors in science education, and began searching for a position. Shortly after, a friend called about an open high school science teacher position in Franklin County, and Lamberth found out she got the job after an interview. However, it was not smooth sailing in the beginning. “My first year was kind of tough; I was a traveling teacher, so I had three different classrooms, but after my first year I settled in and things got better,” said Lamberth. She spent five years in Franklin County, where she served as the department head.

Once she transferred to Leesville, she knew she had found her home. “I really like the community at Leesville, and the teachers I’ve been around are all really good,” said Lamberth. While teaching can be a very stressful job, Lamberth chooses to focus on the positives. “I like the interaction with my students. I like having discussions, and like being able to share information and I like being able to have a relationship with my students,” said Lamberth.

 

The impact

Lamberth is a teacher who has a passion for what she does and it is obvious to Leesville students. “She is very knowledgeable about the subjects she teaches, willing to help her students, and is very nice and kind,” said Sydney Tucker, a junior in Lamberth’s AP Environmental Science class.

Lamberth is a great teacher whose impact goes beyond the classroom. “I had one student that had a medical condition while he was in my class, and he was really struggling just to be at school. So I made home visits to his house, delivered materials, and tutored him to make sure he could pass the test in the end. He ended up graduating high school on time, despite his medical condition, and wrote me a letter after he graduated college saying he had gone into biology and that he was thankful for the time I spent trying to keep him on track,” said Lamberth.

As for why Lamberth teaches, the answer is simple: “I just have a passion for the job. I really enjoy what I do and can’t see myself doing anything else,” said Lamberth.

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