National Teacher of the Year, Rebecca Mieliwocki, joked around with President Obama today, during a ceremony held in her honor at the White House. Ms. Mieliwocki is a seventh-grade English teacher at Luther Burbank Middle School in Burbank, CA, and she's the latest A+ teacher to get the award that dates back to Harry Truman. Teaching runs in Ms. Mieliwocki's family — both her mother and father were public school teachers — but her path to education wasn't direct. Like many women, she wasn't sure what she wanted to do with her life, first wanting to be a lawyer, then working in publishing, floral design, and event planning. She described her teaching vocation as such: "Teaching truly is a calling. I may not have picked up the phone right away, but eventually I answered the call."
According to Obama's description of her, Ms. Mieliwocki isn't exactly an all-business, strict kind of teacher. At the ceremony today he said she was a "little goofy when I met her," and she does describe herself as a "12-year-old goofball dying to get out." Ms. Mieliwocki beat out 3.2 million other nominated teachers to win the award, and she and Obama both resembled two kids having fun today during the celebratory ceremony. Ms. Mieliwocki could be an inspiration not only to teachers, but to all women who want to find meaning in their lives and follow their dreams. See pictures of the feel-good White House event now.