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The Village Teacher

Freebird McKinney

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Freebird McKinney

The Village Teacher

Welcome to the website of Freebird McKinney- The Village Teacher. First of all, in getting to know me, you need to know that I am fulfilling my ENTELECHY, on a daily basis. I was literally, figuratively, and metaphorically, BORN TO BE A TEACHER! It is my calling, my destiny, and my purpose. Apart from being a husband, a father, a son, a brother, a friend, and a HUMAN BEING, I take no other aspect of my life more seriously. I am a historian, a literary fanatic and a philosopher at heart, and I passionately engage in the pursuit of knowledge and the acquisition of wisdom as I draw in every waking breath. The impetus for this tireless journey lies in my dedication to the profession of education and to each and every one of my student's self-realization and self-actualization.

Student Leadership Academy at the NC Gen

About Freebird McKinney-
The Village Teacher

2018- 2019 North Carolina

State Teacher of the Year

Learning and teaching are not only important, but defining aspects in my life as "The Village Teacher". Since pursuing a career in higher education, my unique approach has been transformative in guiding students on their path to self-realization and actualization. With a true dedication to sharing knowledge and wisdom with my students, I have had the blessing and honor of educating and inspiring countless young men and women inside and outside of the classroom.

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A Little More about Freebird McKinney- The Village Teacher

Life’s Lesson Plan

I have dedicated my life for the last 13 years to becoming “The Village Teacher”. I live, breathe, and eat anything having to do with History, Literature, Philosophy, and engaging students in the pursuit of these subjects. I also engage in life and pursue the integration of these passions, and their lessons, to living an “Every Day Life”. 

My own educational journey and life experiences have allowed me the privilege to weave the lessons I have learned in the study of history and the “engaged living” of philosophy, into the relationships I develop and the career and profession I have created. I see lessons everywhere. Thus the ability to learn mindfulness and to apply it to our daily existence creates a meaningful life, where we reflect about ourselves- WHO AM I. when we choose, hopefully HAPPINESS, and even greater, how we learn about our place in the world- WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO BE HUMAN.




The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill 


  • Major: BA in Anthropology (focus in Eastern Philosophy)

  • Related coursework: Focused on Zen Buddhism, Shintoism, Taoism, and Confucianism and political, religious, social, and cultural integration of these philosophies/ spiritualities.

The University of North Carolina at Greensboro


  • Major: BA in History

  • Related coursework: Chinese and Japanese History/ Eastern Philosophy

The University of North Carolina at Greensboro


  • Major: Masters in Education

  • Related coursework: Curriculum and Instruction- Social Studies licensure with a World History focus.

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In my current role as a Professional Academic, I have taught at several high schools, teaching a variety of social studies courses. I have also held multiple positions of leadership and have served on many student support groups, as well as led student organizations focused on service learning. In short, I am "The Village Teacher."

2018-2019 North Carolina State Teacher of the Year


2018-2019 Named North Carolina State Teacher of the Year and will serve as "Teacher on Loan" for the State of North Carolina representing our profession, our schools, and our students.

North Carolina Piedmont-Triad Regional Teacher of the Year


2018 Voted the NC Piedmont-Triad Regional Teacher of the Year. One of nine finalists for North Carolina Teacher of the Year.

Alamance Burlington School System- District Teacher of the Year


2017 Walter M. Williams High School Teacher of the Year voted ABSS District Teacher of the Year

Social Studies Teacher at Williams High School

2015- Present

  • AP European History, AP World History, World History (CP/ Honors)

  • Co-Coordinator of International Baccalaureate Diploma Program (beginning August 2018)

  • Creativity, Action, Service Coordinator for IB DP

Adjunct Professor at Elon University, School of Education

Beginning- Spring Semester, 2018

  • EDU 355- 21st Century Teaching

Cooperating Teacher for Elon University Teacher Education Program

2016- Present

  • Cooperating Teacher of  2017 Elon University Student Teacher of the Year- Isabel Incorvati

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Instructor at ABSS Honors Institute at Elon University

Summer of 2017

  • Social Science Instructor for a collaborative effort between the school system and university to provide a summer enrichment experience for talented and motivated students. Participants include rising high school juniors and seniors. The four-week institute met daily on the campus of Elon University and challenged students to become more engaged citizens.

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AP European History Teacher for North Carolina Virtual Public Schools

2014- Present

  • Course Leader for AP European History

  • Curriculum Writer for AP Euroepan History

  • Instructor for AP European History

  • Instructor for Summer School- Honors World History

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Curriculum Development, Co-Director, and Teacher for Dustin's GreenHouse

2007- Present

  • I am currently serving as director of “Dustin’s Greenhouse- Alamance County Division”, a community organization that develops leadership and engaged citizenship in students of Alamance and Guilford County. Our leadership program culminates with a Service Learning Adventure to engage in real-life global education.  In 2007, I participated with a group of students to Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands for three weeks. In 2010, I participated with a group of students to Peru for 23 days, hiking both the Incan Trail and spending a week on the Amazon River in Iquitos. In 2013, I participated with a group of students to South Africa for almost a month. In 2015 and 2016, we had an amazing journey to the Yucatan peninsula to study Mayan culture and architecture. (Visit for more information.)

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Social Studies Teacher at Grimsley Senior High School


  • 2015 Grimsley Senior High School Teacher of the Year

  • IB Philosophy, AP European History, World History (CP/ Honors)

  • CAS Coordinator of International Baccalaureate Diploma

  • Served as Social Studies Department Chair.

  • Member of the Guilford County Global Education committee.

  • Teacher sponsor of the Human Experience Club/ Dustin's Greenhouse, a service-learning club focusing on grass-roots global awareness and service.

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Social Studies Teacher at Eastern Guilford High School


  • Social Studies Department Head, 2007-2008.

  • Co-author and advisor for the Freshmen Humanities program

  • Freshmen Seminar/ Humanities (with a focus in World Spirituality), Honors/ CP World History

  • "Rookie Teacher of the Year" Award at EGHS, 2004-2005

  • Administrator for Summer School, 2007

  • Taught English 9 during Summer School, 2005 and 2006

  • Co-Founder of the Travel Club, leading a trip to Europe (London, Paris, and Rome), 2008

  • Head Varsity Cross Country and Track Coach (4 consecutive seasons)

  • Head JV Men’s Basketball Coach (4 consecutive seasons)

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Journey's End, Berryhill Road, The Shire


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