After Dixon’s mom informed him of a WGVU-TV contest for nominating teachers worthy of recognition, the 9-year-old sat down and finished his essay in an hour for his teacher, Jeff VanDyke.
VanDyke, a Grand Haven resident, said he was at first surprised when he received a phone call from the West Michigan public television station to inform him that he would receive the title as a WGVU Cool Teacher.
“Then, I was flattered my student would do that for me,” he said.
Dixon said his teacher found him at lunch to let him know that he had won.
“I was screaming in my head,” the boy said. “I was so excited.”
The classroom celebrated the news with a pizza party and Dixon reading his essay that included reasons why VanDyke is a "cool teacher." Some of the reasons Dixon gave involved VanDyke singing “Hello, Goodbye” by the Beatles when they return from recess and making learning fun by using the classroom whiteboard to play math-related games.
“I’m glad they feel that way about the class,” VanDyke said.
VanDyke’s and Dixon’s families also received four vouchers each for an Amtrak train trip from Grand Rapids to Chicago.