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*Editor's note: David Holland is a Canvas Teacher of the Year award recipient.  

Canvas Teacher of the Year Awards

My father was a teacher for over 25 years and the positive impact he had on students challenged me to pursue the field of education. He made such a difference in many students’ lives; I decided that is what I wanted to do.

One reason I wanted to become a teacher was to help make a positive impact on students’ lives in and outside of school. I am also an advisor of a program called “Best Buddies International” (which is an all-inclusive program for students with and without disabilities and pairs them together as buddies). This program helps students that have a disability or not, feel included in their school environment and community.

Best buddies program

Being the Best Buddies advisor at my school, I believe in teaching every student to be a good person in society, along with having community involvement. This program has changed the school environment and community greatly by helping all students and staff have the ability to feel like they belong.

I believe teaching has changed dramatically, so engaging students can be a difficult thing to do.  I feel that being a teacher, you have to be truly passionate when it comes to students. I believe in creating an environment of respect and rapport with my students to build those relationships.

I believe in teaching every student to be a good person in society, along with having community involvement.

Working with technology in the classroom has been one helpful tool to differentiate instruction when it comes to reaching each of my students’ academic needs. Canvas has helped me keep track of students’ progress along with keeping them accountable with their classwork, which has improved student progress. The world continues to change and we as teachers have to adapt to make the learning environment effective for the modern day classroom. Technologies, along with programs like Canvas, are great resources for helping student achievement, along with making educators better teachers.


Keep learning,

David Holland
Special Education Teacher & Best Buddies Advisor, Rawlins High School (Wyoming)