Education

North Cedar's Carla Green a dedicated educator, farmer

HS journalism: Teachers really do have lives outside of school

Carla Green, with her husband Marty, owns a cattle and row crop operation north of Grand Mound. Green also is a teacher at North Cedar High School, including adviser for yearbook, and teaches two classes at the school through Kirkwood Community College. (Family photo)
Carla Green, with her husband Marty, owns a cattle and row crop operation north of Grand Mound. Green also is a teacher at North Cedar High School, including adviser for yearbook, and teaches two classes at the school through Kirkwood Community College. (Family photo)

CLARENCE — As kids we often made a crazy assumption that our teachers lived at school.

We thought they taught and that was it. To see them in public — like at a grocery store — shocked us. They have lives outside of school?

As we grow older and a little wiser, we figure out our teachers have lives outside of school and even have a house and family.

But there still is more to every person.

One teacher at North Cedar High School especially deserves to be recognized for her work inside and outside of school.

Carla Green has taught English and communications for eight years at North Cedar High School and deserve some recognition. She recently was nominated for the Teacher Excellence Award.

She also has been the yearbook adviser during her time at North Cedar and teaches at Composition I and II at Kirkwood Community College’s North Cedar campus.

Though this is just her position from 7:30 a.m. to 3:45 p.m.

When she isn’t grading a mountain of papers at home, she is helping her husband on the farm.

Green has been an educator for 33 years. She began her teaching career at Wayne Community, where she had graduated high school. After two years at Wayne, she accepted a position at Albia. She and her husband, John Anderson, left to take over her husband’s family farm. They ran the farm and raised pigs, which they sold to FFA and 4H students. Anderson was an agriculture teacher and they both wanted to help provide projects to these students. Together, they were very successful with Anderson Show Pigs, which Green’s children, Jeremy and Melissa, also showed at multiple shows and fairs.

Even while running this family business, Green and her husband taught at Ellsworth Community College. In 2000, Anderson died from pancreatic cancer. Despite this tragedy and loss, Green continued to be successful with Anderson Show Pigs with the help of her children. It eventually came time for the hogs to be sold because her children were out of college and moving into their own careers.

This, however was not the end of farming for this dedicated educator and farmer.

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“The rule was I would run the tractor either mowing, raking or baling hay until 3 p.m. when I had to go to my mother’s and shower and put on a dress to become ‘Professor Williamson’,’” Green said.

She increased her teaching schedule with four nights a week at Des Moines Area Community College, Buena Vista and Upper Iowa University. She helped her son on his farm and also took on more work at her family farm after her father died.

In May 2010, she came to North Cedar. Yet again, she found herself as a teacher by day and a farmer by night. In 2011, Carla Williamson officially became Mrs. Green when she married Marty Green, who is a successful farmer in Grand Mound.

The Greens have a grain and livestock operation. They feed out 400 steers and maintain 185 head cowherd. When she is not teaching or grading papers, she helps her husband feed cattle, run tillage or haying equipment. They are involved in Iowa Cattlemen and help some 4H and FFA students with their cattle projects.

As if this is not enough, she also does all the records for her son Jeremy’s Angus cow herd and helps with the embryo transfer and artificial insemination program.

“I love teaching whether it is about feeding or caring for an animal or teaching college classes in rhetoric,” Green said.

Students at North Cedar might not have recognized Green’s hard work in education and farming outside the walls of the school, but we do know about her hard work inside.

As a student of Green’s for nearly four years now, I can truly say she is one of the most hardworking teachers I know. I, along with many others, are in this “tribe” at North Cedar called yearbook, which requires many skillful hands to put together a great book every year. Fortunately, our adviser is skilled in every aspect and teaches us how to write well for captions and articles, create dynamic layouts, take quality photos as well as teach us about sales and accounting when selling yearbooks and advertisements.

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She works to sort pictures, sell yearbooks and schedule photo opportunities between all of her other classes and responsibilities. She also takes time out of her busy schedule to reward her yearbook students with her world-class baking and cooking skills. It’s always a great day when Green pulls out a pan of something she’s made.

“The students are really challenged and create a great book that records the history of our school,” Green said. “I am so proud of my students for the excellent work and the time they devote to making our yearbook a work of art.”

Yearbook is just one of many classes she teaches, including the two college classes.

Green has provided an amazing opportunity for students at North Cedar by teaching Composition I and II through Kirkwood Community College. This allows students to get college credit in a high school setting with a live teacher. This allows students to save money and have the help of a live teacher instead of being restricted to an online program.

“Teaching college classes helps me keep current with changes in the English profession and provides me with new challenges each semester,” Green said. “I am glad that I can provide college courses to our high school students in the high school setting.”

It is safe to say that Green is one hardworking and dedicated educator, farmer, wife, mother and grandma. It also is safe for us to now assume teachers do have a life outside of school.

Despite obstacles, injury and tragedy in her life, Carla Green has remained dedicated to what she loves and cares about most. I am truly grateful I have had the opportunity to be taught by such a great educator and person.

“Mrs. Green was always willing to assist me with scholarship essays or any other writing assignment,” North Cedar graduate Lindsey Crock said. “She improved my writing skills tremendously and was one of my favorite teachers I had in high school.”

And staff member and fellow teacher, Jane Koch noted “She is always willing to try something new and advance her skills to help her students.”

She shows us you really can do it all.

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Remember to thank your teachers. They go above and beyond, inside and out of their classrooms. Most importantly, take time to thank Green for her hard work here at North Cedar.

She deserves it.

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