Melissa Licata wins ExCEL Award for Northside Independent School District


by Deborah Knapp / KENS 5

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Posted on September 22, 2011 at 2:23 PM

Melissa Licata wins ExCEL Award for

Northside Independent School District

A big surprise for a Northside Independent School District teacher who didn't know she was being honored by KENS 5 and SACU..

There were lots of excited little faces at Carnahan Elementary this week as Deborah Knapp stunned their teacher Melissa Licata, with the KENS 5 SACU Golden Apple Award.

Mrs. Licata had a second surprise when her husband and two young sons showed up for the award.

Melissa Licata

Regardless of age, they agree with second grader Carolyn Dell.

is the gifted and talented teacher at Carnahan Elementary and works with children kindergarten through fifth grade.

"She always thinks of the funnest ways to ever learn, said Dell.

Right now second graders are working on idioms focusing on time.

"The children are looking at idioms and realize it makes sense if you've grown up with the language. But if you're new to the language and I say hold your horses, you wouldn't necessarily know what that means," explained Licata.

Some of the idioms students are working with include "Time on your hands" and "Times a Wastin".

It's a challenging concept, but under the guidance of this gifted teacher they're learning.

Melissa Licata also wants her students to learn this...

"I want them to focus on their strengths but also to understand that we all have weaknesses. Sometimes gifted and talented students don't realize they have weaknesses, or other students don't see them with weaknesses. But we all have them. I want them to strive to do their best,"

said Licatta.

Teaching for 19 years, Melissa Licatta says she loves what she does, especially as a gifted and talented teacher.


It's clear this is a teacher who stands the test of time.

n this job I have the ability to work with kids of all ages. I get to see them grow and become different people when they reach fifth grade. Many of them stay in touch through high school and college," said Licatta.