Danielle Gover, Choral instructor, Named MCPS ‘Rising Star Teacher of the Year’

Courtesy MCPS

Less than two years on the job, Danielle Gover is knocking it out of the park. Gover, choral teacher at Westland Middle School, is this year’s Rising Star Teacher of the Year.

The honor was announced on Wednesday in the MCPS Staff Bulletin. Per the Bulletin: While early in her career, Gover demonstrates an exceptional ability to tailor her teaching methods to meet the diverse needs of her students. Gover instructs beginning chorus, intermediate concert choices, advanced chorale, and two general music ukulele courses. She adeptly breaks down complex musical concepts into understandable parts, ensuring every student comprehends and appreciates the content.

Gover effectively adjusts lessons for autism resource services inclusion classes and designs curriculum for the International Baccalaureate Middle Years Programme. Colleagues observe that in her classroom, every student sings with confidence and conviction, highlighting her talent in fostering confidence and curiosity even in the most reserved students.

Gover’s love for music began in her youth, singing in choirs, hosting jam sessions with her family, and participating in musicals. Inspired by a choir teacher in high school, she pursued a music education degree at the University of Delaware, studying voice and serving as the music director of an a cappella group and a section leader in the university’s chorale.

Now in her second year at Westland, she has significantly grown the choir program from 60 to 90 singers. In her first year, her seventh and eighth-grade choir earned high and superior ratings, while her sixth-grade choir earned superior ratings. In May 2023, the choir achieved near-perfect scores in adjudications and won first place at Music in the Parks, a festival in Williamsburg, VA, welcoming performance ensembles from across the U.S. and Canada.

Through Westland’s Y’all Come Sing after-school club, she includes more students, regardless of musical experience, catering to those with busy schedules and increasing access to the arts. Additionally, she is establishing an after-school choral program at Rock Creek Forest Elementary School, one of Westland’s feeder schools.

Gover will be honored alongside other recipients at the Champions for Children celebration on Wednesday, May 1, at Carver Educational Services Center in Rockville.

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Now in its 17th year, the Kensington Day of the Book Festival is a family-friendly street festival featuring 150+ renowned authors, poets, and literary organizations. Enjoy live music on five stages, special guest speakers, military veteran writers and comedians, poetry readings, cookbook demos, children's program, and much more.

Admission is free, and attendees will also be able to explore a marketplace of books and food offerings from local vendors.

Not your average book festival! This festival offers something for everyone!

17th Annual Kensington Day of the Book Festival

Sunday, April 21, 2024, 11am-4pm (held rain or shine!)

Howard Avenue, Kensington, MD 20895


Instagram: @kensingtonbookfestival

Contact: Elisenda Sola-Sole, Festival Director

[email protected]

301-949-9416 (text preferred)

FEST OF SPRING Caribbean Wine Food & Music Festival

Get ready to experience the vibrant colors, tantalizing flavors, and infectious rhythms of the Caribbean at the FEST OF SPRING Caribbean Wine Food & Music Festival! Hosted by RHU LLC, this exciting festival is set to take place on May 18, 2024, at the picturesque 16700 Barnesville Rd in Boyds, MD.

Step into a world where the Caribbean spirit comes alive! From 12:00 PM onwards, immerse yourself in a sensory journey that celebrates the unique culture, cuisine, and music of the Caribbean. Whether you're an African American, a Reggae or Soca music enthusiast, a wine lover, or part of the vibrant Caribbean diaspora, this festival promises to delight and captivate you in every way.

Let the enticing aromas of mouthwatering Caribbean dishes tantalize your taste buds. Feast on traditional delicacies prepared by expert chefs, showcasing the rich and diverse culinary heritage of the Caribbean. Indulge in flavorful jerk chicken, succulent seafood, and delectable plantain dishes that will transport you straight to the islands.

Accompanying the culinary extravaganza is a carefully curated selection of premium wines, ensuring the perfect pairing for your palate. Sip on fine wines from renowned vineyards, each sip a reflection of the Caribbean's vibrant spirit. Discover new flavors, expand your wine knowledge, and savor unforgettable moments with every glass.

As the sun sets, get ready to groove to the infectious rhythms of Caribbean music. Feel the pulsating beats of reggae, soca, dancehall, and calypso, moving your body to the lively melodies. Live performances by talented musicians and performers will keep the energy high, ensuring a night of unforgettable entertainment.

Don't miss this opportunity to embrace the Caribbean spirit and celebrate the arrival of spring in style! Tickets are available on AllEvents, so secure your spot today. Join us at the FEST OF SPRING Caribbean Wine Food & Music Festival, where cultures collide and unforgettable memories are made.



2 NIGHT Camping packages available: RV/CAMPER $200 | TENTS $150 Starting on Friday May 17 @ 5pm | 30 RV SPACES | 30+ TENT SPACES



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