'America's oldest teacher' turns 102, still going strong

A New Jersey teacher widely considered the nation's oldest turned 102 Tuesday, as students and family celebrated with cake and hugs.

Agnes Zhelesnik works 35 hours a week teaching pre-kindergarten to fifth-grade students at the private Sundance School in North Plainfield how to cook and sew. They call her "Granny."

The Watchung resident began working as a teacher when she was 81.

She tells the Courier News of Bridgewater she's going to stay as long as she can, making children happy.

The Seventy Four visited Zhelesnik and watched her educating and inspiring her kids. She said that even if fewer students across the country are learning home economics, "you'll be surprised how they are going to remember it when they get older, or even as a mother."

The website called her "America’s Oldest — and Most Adorable — Teacher."

Principal Benjamin Fox says Zhelesnik is an icon. "Besides the fact that she feeds everyone and makes the school smell wonderful, she just makes everybody smile."

The Associated Press contributed to this report.