Nicole Robson named Blue KC Sporting Samaritan for June

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When Nicole Robson returned to school to pursue her Masters in Elementary Education, she knew her calling was to help educate children. Her stint as a Special Education Paraprofessional at Blue Valley’s Hilltop Learning Center helped her fall in love with the classroom, and specifically teaching. It didn’t take long before she accepted a position at Valley Park Elementary School in Overland Park, Kansas as a second-grade teacher in a Chinese Immersion classroom.

This unique program aims to create bilingual students by instructing kids in a second language from kindergarten through high school. Together with her partner teacher, Robson has successfully taught Chinese Immersion students since the program’s inception four years ago, and looks for any opportunity to praise her students and their development. In doing so, she celebrates any and all accomplishments throughout each day to bring smiles to their faces.

“My most proud moments as an educator can be found in my students,” says Robson. “Any day I am in the classroom and I get to watch a student’s eyes widen in an ‘aha!’ moment, I am filled with excitement. Every time a student does a kind act, or shares kind words with another student, I get a similar feeling.”

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The diversity found within the walls at Valley Park creates a plethora of opportunities for Robson to embrace the various cultures, interests and passions of her students and fellow administrators. She’s designed her classroom to reflect the best parts of the world we all live in, and uses her student’s input and recommendations as guidance.

“I think of a sign I once saw in a preschool classroom,” said Robson. “It states: Let them be little. I think of how our youth should be full of experience, exploration and enjoyment. I’m always looking for opportunities for my students to find their voice and use it. School is such a great time and place to find yourself.”

Teaching a language program, Robson’s best and most notable piece of advice for those in her classroom is a simple, one-word message – practice. Practice your craft, practice your work, practice your core values. She feels incredibly fortunate to be in a school with supportive educators that she can learn from and lean on.


“Nicole is a supportive, encouraging and kind-hearted teacher,” said Robson’s nominator, Chad Ellingson. “She provides individualized attention to each student and allows them to demonstrate the unique attributes that make them special. For example, after learning students enjoyed hearing each other’s jokes, she carved out time for them to share during school. She has also arranged class picnics and hosted the first-ever ‘Second Grade Classroom Talent Show’. When thanked, she often responds with, ‘It’s not a job, it’s a joy.”

“The success, positivity and energy Nicole brings to her second-grade classroom is positively contagious,” said Christina Lively, Blue KC Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer. “The importance of her position, to immerse elementary school students into the Chinese language, may pose a challenge to some, but her mindset and approach to each day is inspiring and unique. With so many opportunities thrown at young students, we’re fortunate to have a powerful and determined educator like Nicole leading the way for the next generation.”

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“I am so excited to be recognized as a Blue KC Sporting Samaritan,” said Robson. “It’s incredibly flattering to know that the Ellingson’s thought enough of me to place me in this position. It makes me want to hold myself to a higher standard to feel I deserve it.”

Fans are encouraged to nominate teachers and students who are making a positive impact on their schools and communities by using the form online at