Many people say teachers help shape the adults of our future. That is why it is important to show those that are going above and beyond some appreciation with a My Teacher is Tops Award. Junior Journalist Charlie Gottschalk surprised one teacher who has always known this was her passion.

Mrs. Ashley Bennette may have been shocked when she got the award, but her students knew she deserved this award, especially her student Cheyenne Howard who sent in the letter.

"She encourages us on tests and she says, 'You can do this. Don't be hard on yourself,'” says Howard as she read her letter.

Cheyenne Howard’s thoughtful letter to Mrs. Bennette brought her to tears.

"You don't see me cry very often, do you? But these are good tears, not sad tears,” says Bennette.

She is a third grade teacher at Kings Chapel Elementary School in Perry. Mrs. Bennette says always knew she wanted to work with kids.

"I credit wanting to become a teacher all the way back in Kindergarten. I always loved school. At the first day of Kindergarten, most kids are crying and sad and scared, but I thanked my parents because this is what I waited my whole life for at 5 years old,” says Bennette.

Although Mrs. Bennette is new to Georgia, her students already love her and are really benefiting from her teaching style.

"She is caring, kind, and awesome. I'm not so good at math, and Mrs. Bennette helped me a lot on math,” explains student Avalee Hartis.

Some of her students say when they think about Mrs. Bennette three words come to mind.

"Cool, awesome, and fun. She helped me type and understand it,” says Thomas Singleton.

Mrs. Bennette’s students say even when they get an answer wrong, she is always willing to steer them in the right direction.

"I got something wrong and she called me back to her desk and helped me and talked it through. It made sense and it triggered and I got it right,” says Zachary Peacock.

If you want to nominate your favorite teacher send a one-page handwritten letter to My Teacher is Tops, 1314 Gray Highway, Macon, 31211 and remember neatness counts!