Asbury University Educator of the Month: Keegan Hatton

A study in perpetual motion, first grade teacher Keegan Hatton swooshes across the floor from one activity to the next, always keeping her Bourbon Central Elementary students connected and engaged. Even the classroom itself seems to vibrate with vitality – a veritable explosion of color with nary an empty spot on the walls and ceilings. A pastel beach umbrella graces one corner of the room, Vicki Verb and Contraction Carl posters peer at the students from another wall, multi-colored decorations hang from the ceiling, and colorful phonics charts appear in multiple locations. Perhaps it’s not surprising energy and animation are the watchwords in Hatton’s classroom. When she completes a full day of high-energy teaching, she heads to a dance studio where she teaches clogging to kids and adults. A lifelong clogger, Hatton still competes, and her team, Stole Power,is the reigning national champion. On Theatrical Thursday during the weekly school assembly at Bourbon Central,Hatton frequently entertains the crowd with her clogging skills. The most dazzled members of the audience? Her first-graders.“Mrs. Hatton,” they exclaim, “I can’t believe you can do that. You’re so old.” She’s 25. Hatton tells that story on herself and punctuates it with an infectious laugh. Clearly, this is a woman who finds joy in everything around her. “I love my job and coming to work every day,” she said. “The kids, teachers and parents are phenomenal. When you see a kid get it in class, it’s incredibly gratifying… As long as I can remember,  I have wanted to be a teacher.”Hatton’s mother is a high school teacher and her father is a youth minister.“There were always kids at our house,” she said, “and I grew up watching my parents make a difference in people’s lives. I want to do the same.”Mission accomplished, according to Principal Keith Madill, who points out that despite working at the school for only four years, Hatton is the first-grade team leader, maintains the school’s Website, sits on the principal’s leadership team and coaches the Governor’s Cup academic team. “She is so enthusiastic and positive, he said. “She has a deep and sincere love for the school, colleagues and students.”