#LatinosTeach, Recognizing Fernando Sanchez


Fernando Sanchez was born in Los Alamos, New Mexico and raised in Espanola, New Mexico. He earned his bachelor’s degree in 2001 from Southwestern Assemblies of God University in Waxahachie, Texas where he met his wife. They later got married in 1997 and now have 3 amazing children (6, 8, and 10).

Fernando teaches 5th grade science at Red Oak ISD in Red Oak, Texas and has taught elementary for 14 years. This year, he was honored as the Red Oak ISD Elementary Teacher of the Year. In his teaching career, he has based everything on a quote he heard years ago: “If you capture their heart, you can capture their mind.” He takes pride in building relationships with his students in a fun, exciting, and humorous way. He likes to make my students see that school can be fun because their minds open up to learning when they do.

Why do I teach? I teach to reach. I want to impact as many students as possible to help them develop a love for learning and show them they have a structure and a grownup they can count on when other positive structures and influences are few and far between in their lives.

What do I love about teaching? I love the relationships I am able to build with students, and I love seeing their minds blow wide open when they trust you and your classroom environment and are given permission to try harder than they thought they could.

I have taught in 3 different places in my career and each place was demographically and culturally different and diverse, but I can say with certainty that when it comes to learning, all children can develop a love for it. It just takes someone who is willing to show them the way.

Was there a great teacher who inspired me? Absolutely! His name was Mr. Senteney. He was my sixth grade teacher. He showed me that school was fun and learning was exciting. He was very funny and likeable and it made school a great place to be.