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Cottonwood Heights Journal

Butler Elementary Teacher Recognized As A Teacher Of The Year

May 01, 2015 11:32AM ● By Bridget James

Colleagues of Lani Heidt (3rd from the right) present her award.

Each year, the Canyons School District holds nominations for Teacher of the Year Awards for educators of kindergarten  up to adulthood. Parents, colleagues and students nominate those who exemplify a strong dedication to their teaching role. One individual, in particular, whose passion for educating youth brought her to such distinction, humbly expresses the pure joy she receives in teaching her students year after year.

Lani Heldt, a kindergarten schoolteacher at Butler Elementary, knew she wanted to teach at the age of 11. She has taught students for over 30 years, 27 of which are kindergarten aged. “Kindergarten is fun because these students are so excited to learn.” Heldt said. “They make me laugh and see life from a wonderful perspective.” And it's no wonder why she truly enjoys teaching kindergarten students. It's the acknowledgment of these young minds' ideas and how they grasp concepts at an early age that Heldt was so easily nominated for such an award. It takes an individual with a passion for her career as an educator to prove her worthiness to such distinction.
Lani Heidt (back, middle) is surprised by receiving the Teacher of the Year Award.

 Heldt has taught at Butler Elementary for six years now and has enjoyed  getting to know all the students, families and co-workers during her  30 year long career. 

She is among 46 teachers in the Canyons School District to receive this award this year. On April 3, the honorable teachers were given news of their nominations in surprise celebrations. In addition to their award, they were given prize packages containing donated gifts by a variety of local sponsors. Each Teacher of the Year will then move on to be considered for the Canyons School District Teacher of the Year. (For the full list of the 46 finalists, go to the Canyons School District's main web page,

“Teaching is gratifying because you get to see the impact (on the students) each year. I want to help each student reach their potential and discover their many talents.” Heldt said. And she has been fortunate enough to watch her influence on all of the lives that have walked through her classroom doors for the past 30 years. “Every year is a new adventure!” Heldt said.