Senior Cassidy Moses wins 4th place for Childhood Education at the National SkillsUSA Competition
Hello, little mouse. What are you doing?” Junior Cassidy Moses said to the invisible child sitting in front of her. The SkillsUSA judges scrutinizing her award winning lesson watched with careful eyes as she read “The Little Mouse, The Red-Ripe Strawberry, and the Hungry Bear,” by Don and Audrey Wood. After she finished reading, she continued her lesson by playing an educational game with her student: match the fruits to the fruits and the vegetables to the vegetables. Moses accomplished all these tasks with confidence and ease, considering she was vying for first place at the National SkillsUSA competition.
“I didn’t think I was going to do Skills my sophomore year, but my teacher convinced me to sign up…I was the youngest in that group, so [when] we went to Regionals… it was surprising”, Moses said about joining and competing with SkillsUSA.
Moses traveled with nine PRHS SkillsUSA competitors to the city of Louisville, Kentucky. On June 20, 2015, for the week long competition. Moses arrived on Monday for opening ceremonies and completed a 100 question test and interview pertaining to childhood development and parent interactions with their child on Tuesday. On Wednesday, she was assigned her lesson plan on Food Nutrition for three to five year olds and spent about four hours preparing for the lesson; she decided to focus on the separation of the fruit and vegetable groups.
“I know I could’ve done better if I had math or language arts. I had some really good lessons planned… They haven’t picked Food Nutrition in over ten years, and so everyone was kind of panicking!” Moses said about the chosen curriculum.
On Thursday, Moses presented her lesson plan to a panel of three judges and taught a book reading in front of two judges. The competitors had the choice to present their lessons and book readings to a teddy bear in lieu of a student, or to simply pretend the child was there. On Friday, it was the closing ceremonies and the four hour flight back home.
Moses is no stranger to ranking high in SkillsUSA competitions; after joining SkillsUSA her sophomore year, she placed second at Regionals, where she then advanced to State and placed second again, only two points shy of qualifying for Nationals. During Moses’s junior year, she placed first at both Regionals and State, leading up to her rank of fourth place out of twenty eight at Nationals.
Moses’s compassion with children is noticed by her friends and teachers.
“[Cassidy] knows the psychology of younger children. She knows what makes them tick and what their joys are,” said Vincent McGranahan, Moses’ boyfriend of one year and one month.
“Cassidy is a real asset to our SkillsUSA program and our Bearkitten program… She is a very focused student and cares about everything she involves herself with and that is a big factor in her success in SkillsUSA,” CTE Coordinator, Early Childhood Instructor, and Bearkitten Preschool Director Brenda Matthysse said. Matthysse also praised Moses with her focus on the interview portion of the competition and earning a perfect score nationally in that section.
Moses’s involvement with Bearkittens and SkillsUSA have helped her decide upon a dream career.
“I want to be a pediatric neurologist… it’s really helped me learn how to watch the development of a child… cognitive, social emotional, physical, and language,” Moses said. Moses will compete in her final SkillsUSA competition this year as a senior, using her skills with children to gain national recognition.