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My name is Paula Celestino, but in my classroom I go my: Ms. Paula or Mrs. Celestino. I am a teacher at Canyon Lake Middle School for students with moderate to severe needs.

I have been in education since 2012. I started as a para-educator in a high school classroom for students with moderate to severe autism. This is where I found my calling in special education and became a teacher in 2016. I taught K-3 students with moderate to severe autism and began teaching in a special education class at CLMS in 2018. My students inspire me everyday. Some may have every reason to be upset with the world, yet they are some of the joyful people I have encountered. In our classroom we celebrate even the smallest milestones. My students have unique needs and struggle to do everyday activities that we take for granted. When my student learned to hold her pencil correctly and draw a line, we celebrated! When my student was able to give me eye contact for more than 3 seconds, we celebrated! When my student was able to take 3 steps on his gait trainer without help, we celebrated! I am so blessed to witness my students working hard to achieve their goals. I love being a part of their journey to becoming the best version of themselves. 

Dear Teacher and Carly's Voice are reminders of how I need to be aware of each of my students individual and unique needs. My students ARE CAPABLE. They just need the correct tools to be successful. It is my job as their teacher to advocate for them and provide them with resources and activities to reach their goals.