Henrico County VA
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Henrico’s Top Teachers – E. Scott Broderick

Ridge E.S., fourth grade
As a self-professed “career switcher,” E. Scott Broderick spent years in a variety of sales and management positions.

But even before he followed his heart to teaching, as he puts it, he always found ways to be involved with children, whether through volunteer work or his hobby: performing as an amateur magician at local libraries.

Although he recalls no “light bulb moments” of inspiration to be a teacher, he does have fond memories of all his elementary teachers – from the first grade teacher who was also a neighbor and the second grade teacher who instilled a love of music to later teachers who taught him to love reading and writing.

What’s more, he admits that teaching is probably in his blood, since his father (who went on to become a principal and superintendent) was his physical education teacher while he was growing up.

Today, as a fourth grade teacher, he finds the toughest classroom challenge is engagement, which he describes as “finding fun ways to get your point across so that it will be understood and retained by everyone.”

A long-time Ridge Elementary parent who has had a child in his class calls Broderick’s teaching style “amazing” and says he excels at getting his point across and at engaging his students through conversation.

Not only does he display genuine interest in what interests students, wrote the parent in her nomination, but he also taps that knowledge in ways that inspire them to succeed.

“Mr. Broderick is never one to be comfortable with his technique,” she said. “He is always looking for new strategies and technologies to make sure that each child is reached.”

Her own child learned from Broderick how to use creative writing to express herself, said the parent, and also acquired a love of Virginia history that has enhanced the education of the entire family.

“We often take day trips,” said the mother, “to places she has discovered through her learning in school.”

The student’s mother also observed as Broderick’s patience and firmness with a difficult classmate of her daughter’s turned that student around. Although the boy’s behavior was “erratic” and a source of frequent disturbances, she said, “[Broderick] held the bar high and yet taught the child that he had the ability to reach it.

“Mr. Broderick learned what interested him and used it to motivate the child to learn. I saw this boy develop and grow with every visit I made as a volunteer in class.”

Not only does he inspire youth, added the parent, but Broderick also serves as a mentor to fellow teachers and future educators through volunteering as a lead teacher for VCU practicum students, serving as a representative for county and state professional organizations, and participating in mentor-buddy programs.

Over the years, he has also served on committees charged with such tasks as framing the science curriculum, reviewing discovery science and social studies scope and sequence, writing curriculum for fifth grade social studies and developing a fourth grade pacing guide. In addition, he has served as a team leader and as sponsor of the safety patrol, and participated on the school-wide Title I committee and the principal’s advisory committee.

To top it off, she added, Broderick attends every school event and often helps with PTA programs, from emceeing auctions and talent shows to performing in skits and magic shows.

And what does Broderick receive in return?

Like any teacher, he enjoys seeing the “ah-ha” moments when students make a connection -- shifting from a blank stare at hearing “400 yards” to the glimmer of understanding when he explains the distance as four football fields long. “It’s rewarding to see it sink in,” says Broderick.

Another teaching moment that never fails to warm his heart, he says, is when students grasp the concept that “work ethic is tied to success – and then apply it in class.”

Finally, as the parent of a new kindergartner who enjoys seeing his daughter go eagerly off to school, he especially likes to hear from a parent that their child enjoys coming to school.

“Teaching is its own reward,” says Broderick. “It is important not only to like kids, but also to like making a difference in their lives.

“There is a distinction.”


Community

Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden raises admission $1

Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden’s admission has increased by $1 across all categories. Admission is now $12 for adults; $11 for seniors ages 55 and older; and $8 for children ages 3–12. Admission remains free for children ages 3 and younger and for members.

The last price increase was in 2011, before the Garden consistently hosted Butterflies LIVE! (which is included with admission). > Read more.

Garden tails

The threat of bad weather didn’t keep visitors away from Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden July 10 for the facility’s weekly Flowers After 5 event (which pairs music and food with a chance to stroll the garden) and its monthly Fidos After 5 (which allows dog owners to bring their pets with them to enjoy the evening). > Read more.

Western Henrico Rotary helps fund Midwives For Haiti Jeep


Thanks in part to a $10,000 gift from the Western Henrico Rotary Club, another bright pink Jeep modified to travel extremely rough terrain has been delivered to Midwives For Haiti so that more pregnant women in the quake-ravaged country will have access to prenatal care and a greater chance of surviving childbirth.

The funds were raised at the annual casino night held in February, club president Adam Cherry said. The Rotary Club also helped purchase the Virginia-based charity’s first pink jeep three years ago. > Read more.

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Entertainment

Weekend Top 10


Take in a show at several locations this weekend! West End Comedy will provide laughs at HATTheatre; the production of “Pump Boys and Dinettes” will close Sunday; and the youth theatre company CharacterWorks will present “Footloose” at The Steward School. Another show perfect for the kids – “Despicable Me 2” is playing at the Eastern Henrico Recreation Center tonight. For all our top picks this weekend, click here! > Read more.

Is there an Echo in here?

‘Earth to Echo’ aims to become this generation’s ‘ET’
It’s no secret that all found-footage genre movies are the same. Grab a couple of characters, give one of them a camera, and expose them to something supernatural that’s content to lurk just off-screen until the last five minutes. Everything else will just fall into place.

But that formula isn’t particularly family friendly, if only because that thing waiting a few feet to the left of the cast is usually plotting their violent doom.

That’s what sets Earth to Echo apart from the pack. It, too, follows a group of characters armed with a camera and a tendency to encounter unknown life forms. But all those familiar parts have been rearranged just enough to make it suitable for a much younger audience. > Read more.

Weekend Top 10


An eclectic array of events are taking place this weekend throughout the county. In the West End, we have the Richmond Wedding Expo, the Under the Stars Family Film Series and Henrico Theatre Company’s production of “Pump Boys and Dinettes.” In the eastern part of the county, we have a blood drive at the Eastern Henrico Recreation Center, Gallmeyer Farm’s annual Sweet Corn Festival and an origami workshop at Fairfield Library. For all our top picks this weekend, click here! > Read more.

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Henrico's Top Teachers