Standing in front of a class of about 20 students at Manzanita Elementary School, first grade teacher Melissa Landau shuffled through slides in her slideshow about fairness.

Make a smart choice friends at your own carpet spot, she reminded her students.

Some students were a little antsier, while others sat quietly.

You guys just earned your seventh mighty oh yaoh ya! Landau chanted while her class repeated in unison.

Its her first year at the Catalina Foothills School District, but shes been a teacher for about 13 years. Both of her parents were educators, her dad teaching for 25 years.

He taught in the same classroom each year so that was one of the things that inspired me to become an educator. I feel like it was kind of in my blood. But Ive also been inspired by other educators that Ive had and its really been a full circle moment.

Some of those educators still teach in the district.

Landau was a student at Canyon View Elementary School, Esperero Canyon Middle School, and Catalina Foothills High School.

I also wanted to be in an environment where I could receive more professional development and continue improving as a teacher, she said.

Part of improving for Landau means passing on to her students what she was taught while going to school in the same district.

Being a Foothills grad definitely influenced how I teach. When I was at Foothills, I always felt like it was a welcoming and inclusive community, she said.

Landau said that welcoming environment also extended to her time as a student at Catalina Foothills High School.

There in room 301, alumni Miriam Frieden was teaching her students about Greek mythology while they traveled to different islands around the classroom.

Shes been a teacher there for seven years, coming back to the district after coaching the color guard in 2005 to 2006.

I had some of my old teachers here which was exciting, I was excited to see them and work with them, Frieden said.

Aside from going to the high school, she also went to Orange Grove Middle School.

This school when I went here was really big on personal responsibility and self-motivation, she said.

As she discussed with her students the role of different Greek mythological figures, she interwove traits she learned in middle and high school in her lesson, hoping to pass that on to her students.

Theyre going to come back to you in a couple of years and theyre going to show you that they did learn from you, she said.

When they do come back, it gives the teachers at the district a sense of pride, especially if they become teachers themselves.

Landau advised to her students that if they want to be teachers at the district, they should think about what inspired them and how they can translate that into their classroom.

Believe in yourself, and after you believe in yourself, hopefully you can instill that in others, she said.

Frieden was reflecting on her time as a teacher, advising students that they should push through their first year and the struggles that come with becoming a teacher.

If youre organized, everything else kind of falls into place, and then you can have fun with your students, which is what I get to do, she said.