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Oldest Working Teacher in US Turns 100 [AUDIO, VIDEO]

America’s oldest working teacher, Agnes “Granny” Zhelesnik, is celebrating her 100th birthday in New Jersey today.

Classroom
Flickr User knittymarie

In honor of the occasion, a special celebration is being held at The Sundance School in North Plainfield, where she is a full-time home economics teacher.

Born in 1914, Granny joined The Sundance School when she was 81 after spending her lifetime as a homemaker. She works 35 hours a week teaching home economics, but she also gives after-school cooking and sewing lessons, and sews costumes for school plays.

“Working with the kids is the fun part. They are so great to be with and they like the food that I make,” Granny said. “I always cook with all-natural ingredients and I try to make things healthy for the children. I think the most important thing I can teach them is about nutrition and how to take care of their bodies.”

So, why does Granny still work at the age of 100?

“I don’t know why people don’t want to work. I think it’s important to get out and do something, and I enjoy cooking with the kids,” Granny said. “I am healthy enough and I’m able to do it and I think an able person should do something, and helping kids is what I like to do.”

Today’s celebration will include a proclamation by North Plainfield, a 100th birthday cake presentation and a performance by Broadway star Lucas Schultz, a Sundance School alumnus. There will also be a special student tribute and performance of one of Granny’s favorite productions, “The Little Mermaid, Jr.”

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Recently, CBS Evening News highlighted Zhelesnik’s story and how much she is adored by the students in a very heartwarming piece  You can view that segment in the video below.

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