I was a high school English teacher. I was never even nominated for teacher of the year within my school, much less any higher. But I enjoyed the experience and worked hard to help my young people forge ahead in the world of reading and writing. I tested their abilities constantly.
It was rarely quiet in my room because I created competitive games with teams (based on rows in the rooms) while adding contingencies for cheating. They were high school students and they wanted to win, at any cost. There was a lot of laughter when "cheaters" were caught and the whole team lost points. The reward did not matter; it was the winning. The slower students learned in spite of themselves, just by listening.
I used recordings to teach literature, especially Shakespeare. I would play the recording of the play we were studying scene by scene and the students would follow along with their books.(I tricked them into "reading" the play.) One of my greatest memories is of a student who was sent to the office by another teacher right before my Julius Caesar class. She was a little late to my class but had a note from the principal. He told me later that she asked to come back after my class for her punishment since "We are killing Caesar, today." He said he had to let her do it because she was so excited about an English class.
I am not relating my techniques for teaching Shakespeare because I think I should have received an award; I am an older retired teacher who loves remembering her successes as an English teacher. I received my rewards back then and I get to remember those experiences now. I think that is a good footnote for any career.
When we reach our senior years it is so nice to look back at the good times. I am fortunate because I have a lot of them to remember. I hope you do , too.