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'American Teacher: Heroes in the Classroom' Features Cunningham Educator

AISD’s Emily E. Smith is one of 50 teachers featured in Random House and Welcome Books’ “American Teacher: Heroes in the Classroom."

The publishers joined forces to interview thousands of educators in every state during the past three years, which culminated in a book about 50 teachers who are changing education. 

"If a child needs a new pair of glasses, then I will contact enough of my friends to pay for the child's glasses," Smith, a fifth grade, English and language arts teacher at Cunningham Elementary School, wrote. "I do all that I can do. My approach to teaching is one that meets the needs of each individual child, and with the demographic that I work with, sometimes that means taking care of the child before I can work with them."

At Cunningham, Smith created the Hive Society to bring young learners together to support each other. She inspires the students to embrace their role as scholars, greeting the students each day with, "Good morning, you princes of thought, you queens of imagination."

Smith, and Amy Lloyd, principal at Cunningham, joined a discussion and book signing for “American Teacher: Heroes in the Classroom” Saturday, Oct. 12, at Barnes & Noble in North Austin. This event was part of Barnes & Noble’s Educator Appreciation Days.

For more information, please visit

Emily is also an Austin ISD Demonstration Classroom Teacher. Visit  to find out how you can visit Emily's classroom watch her in action. In addition, Emily's instructional video sections are included in the Demonstration Classrooms - Elementary online course in HCP through the Cloud.



New Book Celebrates 50 American Teachers

An Austin Educator Made the Cut

Watch KXAN's interview with Smith.