Stevenson High School Family and Consumer Sciences teacher Kristina Robinson is the Michigan Association of Family and Consumer Sciences 2023 Teacher of the Year.

Stevenson High School Family and Consumer Sciences teacher Kristina Robinson is the Michigan Association of Family and Consumer Sciences 2023 Teacher of the Year.

Photo provided by Tim McAvoy

UCS teacher recognized as Teacher of the Year

By: Kara Szymanski | C&G Newspapers | Published June 6, 2023


UTICA/SHELBY TOWNSHIP/STERLING HEIGHTS — At the Michigan Association of Family and Consumer Sciences spring conference, Stevenson High School family and consumer sciences teacher Kristina Robinson was named the 2023 Teacher of the Year.  

Family and consumer sciences formerly was known as home economics. Family and consumer science courses cover a variety of topics including personal wellness, human development, food preparation, nutrition, relationships, family, child development, career exploration and personal finance. In FCS courses, students learn to collaborate with others, use critical-thinking skills and creativity, and apply real-life knowledge and skills to daily life experiences. 

In FCS classes, students have many hands-on activities. In Foods and Nutrition, they learn about making healthier eating choices and food preparation through cooking labs. In Child Development, they learn how to care for young children through the district’s real-care baby project and interacting with children through project-based learning. In Career Connections, students explore career opportunities, write resumes and practice interviewing skills. In Consumer Education, students learn how to plan a personal budget and apply for credit, the importance of credit scores and other personal financial topics.

Robinson said she never imagined that she would get this recognition.

“My favorite thing about teaching FCS is seeing the students make the connections of what we are learning and applying it to their lives. I also love that FCS courses create an environment that allows me to create positive teacher to student relationships,” she said in an email interview. 

At the conference, Robinson’s recognition began with commentary from her colleagues. Eisenhower teacher Lisa Willerick had nominated Robinson for the award.  

“Kristina is an exceptional educator who is innovative and driven to try new things. She believes in FCS education and instructs her courses with integrity and enthusiasm,” Willerick said.

FCS courses are a part of career and technical education. 

“The courses create an engaging classroom experience that allows for collaboration, critical thinking, problem solving, creativity and application to real life scenarios. FCS courses are engaging, and students walk away from the class with many real-life skills they can apply in their daily lives. If students have the opportunity to take an FCS course, I highly recommend it,” Robinson said. 

Willerick said that Robinson welcomed her as a new teacher in the district.

“She embraced my experience and has always been ready to work as a team with the other FCS teachers to make the Utica Community Schools Family and Consumer Science program a top-tier program in the state,” Willerick stated.

Olivia Jouja, a Stevenson High School senior, said Robinson cares about her students like they’re all her kids.

“She really takes the time to teach and help make sure you understand what’s going on. In school you learn things such as math and English, more education-based things, but in this class, you learn outside real-world life skills. We learn how to cook and about different food borne illnesses; she also teaches parenting. It’s future skills that we’re learning, which is really great,” Jouja said via email.

Khadeeja Ali, a Stevenson High School senior, said Robinson really takes the time to understand each student.

“I think that’s really helpful. She’s like a second mother to me. I grew up in a household where cooking was a normal part of our day, but going into her class, there are so many people who don’t know how to cook. The class opens you up to see that not everyone is on the same level, and it allows you to use those skills you may have already built to help each other and also for other students to build on their skills in the kitchen,” Ali said.