Greens Farms Academy is a PreK-12, coed school in Westport, CT

Yensen Lambert Named Connecticut COLT Language Teacher of the Year

The acquisition of knowledge and moments in the classroom that propel students into a life full of curiosity and wonder are trademarks of the GFA experience. That is what students leave Yensen Lambert’s classroom feeling. With two decades of teaching experience, and recently finishing her fourth year at GFA, Yensen Lambert has been named the 2022-2023 Connecticut COLT Language Teacher of the Year. 

Lambert joined the faculty here in 2018, looking for a place where she would feel at home. She expresses now how GFA “feels like a family” and has since the day she began. She feels GFA is a place to grow, to be creative, and to make an impact. Her role as Department Chair and teacher has allowed her to do exactly that, not only with the faculty members who she leads, but with her students, as well. Lambert shares how she loves the autonomy she has at GFA to be creative with her craft, using the instruction of Spanish as a way to broaden her students’ sense of self and world views. 

"There’s something really magical that happens in language classrooms… you learn to see the world through a different lens, and you also learn to appreciate your place in the world,” Lambert said. To provide students with different perspectives than the ones they originally stepped into her classroom with, was one of Lambert’s goals from the day she first began teaching. Lambert helps facilitate the journey for her student’s to become global citizens through the lessons she teaches and the environment she provides within her classroom. Colleagues might tease Lambert about the amount of decorations she has in her room, yet, she explains, these decorations are her artifacts. They express moments, experiences, and interests that she can share with her students. 

Yensen Lambert is the type of teacher who Upper School students want to hang out with–spending extra time in her classroom during their free periods, picking her brain so that they might better get to know the person instructing their class. Whether the students realize it or not, this act allows them to better understand the perspective that Lambert is speaking from when she teaches and thus better understand and appreciate their own perspectives, as they are being introduced to those of people and cultures outside of the one they currently exist within. 

To Lambert, being a teacher goes far beyond instructing the topics in class and she expresses this to her students. School is not about what grade you get, it is the culmination of experiences and the moments of curiosity that lead to the learning, which cannot be explicitly taught. To see her students take risks and follow their passions, to discover who they are and who they have the ability to become is one of the aspects Lambert finds to be most rewarding about being a teacher. Inspiring students to the point where they go out and try the things that were once merely a dream or moment of curiosity. This sense of mutual inspiration and wonder between teacher and students is something Lambert fosters in her classes. Her level of involvement and genuine love for what she does here at GFA and the students in her classroom is one of the reasons her students are so drawn to her, and why she is so deserving of this honor. 

We all wish Yensen Lambert a big Dragon congratulations as the 2022-2023 Connecticut COLT Language Teacher of the Year!