A NBC news crew films teacher Lynn Ovaska Nov. 15 on her mission to teach gratitude to her students at Los Alamos High School. The segment was broadcast nationwide Nov. 20 on ‘NBC Nightly News (link). A longer segment, geared to kids so it highlights more staff and students, aired Saturday Dec. 17 on ‘NBC Nightly News: Kids Edition’ hosted by Lester Holt (link). Courtesy/NBC Screenshot
LAHS student Lourdes Le Doux reads a letter of gratitude to her grandparents Roberta and Harold Martinez during a Nov. 15 filming by a NBC News crew in Teacher Lynn Ovaska’s classroom. Le Doux wrote her gratitude letter to her grandparents because they helped her family during and after her father’s death last year from ALS. Courtesy/NBC Screenshot
By CAROL A. CLARK
Los Alamos Daily Post
A crew from NBC News arrived in Los Alamos last month to film Los Alamos High School (LAHS) Teacher Lynn Ovaska about her special mission to teach kindness and gratitude to her students. News anchor Kate Snow also interviewed Ovaska remotely and the segment was broadcast nationwide Nov. 20 on ‘NBC Nightly News.
The segments was so well recieved that NBC decided to broadcast a longer segment, geared toward kids so it highlights more staff and students. The new segment aired Saturday Dec. 17 on “NBC Nightly News: Kids Edition” hosted by news anchor Lester Holt.
NBC Nightly News Researcher Kailee Chimento originally contacted Ovaska to coordinate filming the original segment. She contacted Ovaska again just after the Thanksgiving holiday.
“Hi Lynn! I was able to see the piece when I came back, it not only brought me to tears, but I know this was one of the more special pieces we’ve done,” Chimento said. “I came back to nothing but strong praise and compliments about not just the story, but for your lesson. You truly left a strong impression on my colleagues, a few of them teared up! Our team couldn’t have been more moved and appreciative that you shared your story with us.”
Chimento went on to say that it was evident how much Ovaska cares about her students and making a positive impact.
“I knew that within only 2 minutes of talking on the phone with you! We truly need more teachers like you in our schools. It was an absolute pleasure to get to know you throughout this process, I’m quite upset I didn’t get to meet you in person!’ Chimento said. “This story only came together because of you, your passion and determination to teach your students, your flexibility, and your willingness/creativity to organize handing off letters to teachers. It was one of the most beautiful and rewarding pieces I’ve worked on, and I know many others share the same sentiment. This was certainly much more than just another story, and that’s because of you and your energy and passion. I can’t emphasize enough how appreciative I am of you and what you bring to teaching every day. I know that sharing this story certainly sparked goodness and gratitude around the nation. I will always remember this story as extra special.”
Over the last few weeks Ovaska and Acting Superintendent Jennifer Guy have delivered letters of gratitude written by students to teachers at elementary schools across the district.
Ovaska thanked Guy for her continued support saying, “Thank you for always leaning into LAPS and helping to give out more letters to the elementary teachers over the last few weeks.”
She also thanked Los Alamos Middle School Principal Jill Gonzales for delivering letters of gratitude recently to middle school teachers.
“Such a meaningful lesson has radiated!” Ovaska said.
View the new NBC segment here: NBC Nightly News: Kids Edition.
Access NBC’s Nov. 20 segment here.