Del Paso Manor’s Joann Darrow Named 2018 Allan Hinderstein Award Winner For Opening ‘A World of Learning Possibilities’ Through Video
Joann Darrow says she learns something new every day at Del Paso Manor Elementary School, which would be encouraging enough if she were a student but even more so because she teaches there.
“To my students, I have a passion for teaching and every day I learn something new from you,” Darrow said at a recent awards ceremony in Sacramento. “You are the reason why I love coming to school and being a part of this amazing program… you guys are awesome!”
Darrow is admired and beloved for her commitment to her fifth grade rapid learner students and to her well-respected video production program at Del Paso Manor. In recognition of what she and her students learn every day in the classroom and video lab, Darrow has been named the 2018 recipient of the Allan Hinderstein Award.
The award is presented each year to a Sacramento area teacher who embraces and instills in students and colleagues the importance and value of media production as a learning tool. Hinderstein, a Sacramento State professor who passed away from cancer, was renowned for his promotion and use of media production to enhance the classroom experience.
The Sacramento Educational Cable Consortium (SECC), which produces Sacramento Comcast’s channels 15 and 16, presented the award to Darrow on April 15, at the 29th annual Sacramento Educational Video Awards (SEVA) Night at Sacramento State. The event honors the Sacramento region’s most talented student video producers and documentary makers. SECC co-sponsored this year’s event with Comcast and the Sacramento Metropolitan Cable Television Commission.
In presenting the award, SECC Board Member Joe Parente praised Darrow for her “commitment to integrating video as a tool for opening a world of learning possibilities. Her SEVA studio lab is a hub of interactivity with students collaborating on a wide range of projects right in her classroom.”
Under Darrow’s guidance, Parente pointed out, her students have entered more than 130 videos in the SEVA competition since 2012, and Del Paso Manor students produce a monthly video news program that SECC shares on its channels.
“Joann Darrow empowers and challenges students to explore the world of media,” Parente added, “and to share their vision within and beyond their school.”
When Parente announced Darrow’s name at the SEVA event and called her to the stage, she was greeted with the sort of frenzied yelling, whistling and applause typically reserved for recording artists, pro athletes and other stars. Of course, that’s the point: in the world of technology and education, Darrow is a bona fide celebrity.
“Joann Darrow is extremely passionate about the students in her class. And she celebrates and recognizes their successes across the board,” Damon Smith, Del Paso Manor’s principal, said in a video tribute to his teacher, adding later, “She’s truly a gem.”
The video’s most endearing and heartfelt praise came from Darrow’s students.
“In the beginning, I didn’t know a single thing about technology, said student Adam Wavrin. “But once I got into Mrs. Darrow’s class, she taught us everything… from filming all the way to on-camera talent.”
Morgan Reed said that without Darrow’s guidance, “my video would be so bad. We would have gone nowhere without her.”
Elizabeth Wang said Darrow “was amazing” as a teacher. And Alex Liu went one step further: “Mrs. Darrow is one of the greatest teachers I’ve ever had at Del Paso Manor!”
Perhaps the most touching compliment came from student Katherine Carroll: “She just helped me believe in myself and helped me believe that I can do it.”
For her part, Darrow had some thank yous of her own to share in her acceptance remarks, including her husband, Jeff Darrow, a technology teacher at John Barrett Middle School.
“I also would love to thank my husband who’s a technology teacher and inspired me seven years ago to get involved,” Darrow said. “And not having any experience, I learned everything from him. So I thank him so much.”