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$4,000 classroom surprise moves Chesterfield teacher to tears

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CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. -- Providence Elementary School second grade teacher Virginia Hendricks was named a 2015 Virginia Lottery Super Teacher during a surprise announcement at her school Wednesday. Along with the award, Ms. Hendricks received a $2,000 check from the Virginia Lottery and $2,000 in store credit from The Supply Room Companies for school supplies.

"I'm extremely overwhelmed and surprised. I'm very honored," Ms. Hendricks said following the check presentation.

Each year, the Virginia Lottery honors eight Super Teachers around the state, choosing one from each geographic region of Virginia. Teachers must be nominated in order to be considered for the award. Ms. Hendricks was nominated by her sister, herself a one-time Virginia Lottery Super Teacher winner.

"Virginia has embraced engineering opportunities in her classroom for years. She has aligned curriculum with engineering modules in order to foster creativity in her room," sister Analisa Herring wrote in her nomination letter. "You can find students in her classroom designing prototypes for testing and then redesigning in an attempt to problem-solve project flaws. It is through this process that Virginia is also teaching risk-taking and confidence-building. Virginia also allows students to demonstrate creativity by encouraging different ways of responding to curriculum according to learning styles."

The judges who choose Super Teachers look for qualities like passion, commitment, innovation, creativity and parental involvement.

"We’re game for education, and these awards are a great way for the Lottery to demonstrate that," Virginia Lottery Executive Director Paula Otto said. "We are committed to supporting Virginia’s public schools, and that includes recognizing outstanding Super Teachers like Virginia Hendricks who are making such a difference in the education of Virginia’s youth and, indeed, our future leaders."

Providence Elementary School