Goldenview Middle School Art Teacher Jenna Ellinwood is the recipient of the Denali Award, ASD’s biannual recognition program that honors employees who have shown outstanding achievement, service, and dedication in ensuring every student has the opportunity to achieve his or her potential. The Denali Award is the highest level award offered by the District.
Adored by her peers and students alike, Jenna Ellinwood’s commitment extends beyond the classroom and beyond the school day. She is described by her principal as a high-skilled educator and gifted artist. Her ability to build genuine relationships with students, parents, and staff greatly influences the climate of her classroom and allows students to learn in a safe and engaging environment focused on self-expression.
No matter the stage of artistic development with which a student enters her classroom, they leave with advanced skills, design tools, and conceptual knowledge.
Her students are well prepared for their next step in their art education.
“When I first entered her classroom, I knew it would be a class I would look forward to in the day,” said a former student. “She was always positive with everyone and willing to help when I didn’t know exactly how to do something or when it just came to giving me a small compliment about my artwork.”
At the strike of 2:45 p.m. each day, Ellinwood switches gears from an art teacher to a motivated and highly driven cross-country running, skiing, or track and field coach, depending on the season. She is also a philanthropist and shares her desire to address the needs of our community through the Empty Bowls Project. She and her students create ceramic bowls which are sold as part of an ice cream fundraiser to benefit the Food Bank of Alaska.
“Her love of visual arts and genuine care for her students is to be celebrated and commended,” said her principal.
Ellinwood will be recognized by the Anchorage School Board on Monday, Dec. 18 with a reception starting at 6:30 p.m. in the Education Center atrium, followed by official School Board recognition at 7 p.m.
She will also be permanently featured on the Denali Award wall display in the Education Center.
Anchorage School District