Hometown: Savannah, GA
Class of 2003
Major: Master of Middle Grades Education
Savannah-Chatham Teacher of the Year
As Daniel Peter Snope ’03 was leading a troop of Boy Scouts on a work project at the Ogeechee Canal Museum and Nature Center, he had a chance encounter with the late Christopher Schuberth, a geology professor at Armstrong Atlantic and administrator of the Troops to Teachers program. Snope, who was retiring from the 160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment (Airborne) at Hunter Army Airfield, said, “He put the bug in my ear and opened my mind to the possibility of a career in education.”
That chance encounter was a fortunate one because Snope, now a mathematics teacher at Savannah Arts Academy, was named the Savannah-Chatham County Public Schools’ 2010 Teacher of the Year.
Snope became a real fan of Armstrong as he worked toward his Master of Middle Grades Education. With a previous bachelor’s in professional aeronautics, he thought he was headed toward a second career of teaching science. Then he met Jane Barnard, Armstrong associate professor of mathematics and an innovative statewide leader in mathematics education, who convinced him to try math. She later recommended Snope for Teacher of the Year.
At Armstrong, he found that “the instructors knew what they were doing and the practicum experience let me know I had made the right choice.”
Of his high school teaching role, Snope says, “I like to show my students that everything has a purpose and mathematics is not just pushing numbers around on paper.”
When the students first enter his calculus classes, he says they have no idea of how interconnected all of the mathematics disciplines really are. He adds, “It’s very satisfying when you see the students learning the process.”
That is only equaled by the satisfaction he gets when his students, who go on to universities such as Georgia Tech, Emory and the University of Georgia, write back to tell him how well prepared he helped them become.
Photo by Megan Morris courtesy of the Savannah Morning News