She has learned the value of trusting, respectful relationships along with the importance of being flexible. In a career where planning and preparation are paramount, knowing when to step back, reflect and adjust or take a new direction is essential.
Tammy spent the first eight years of her career in Walla Walla and Federal Way Public Schools in Washington state teaching fourth grade students.
From 1994 until the present, she has taught for the Great Falls Public School District spending four years at North Middle School as a reading intervention and sixth grade teacher; five years at Meadowlark Elementary as a reading intervention and kindergarten teacher; 17 years at Lincoln Elementary teaching kindergarten, second and fourth grade students and as a reading and math intervention teacher. This last half year, Tammy spent at TSA as a first-grade remote learning teacher.
In recalling a memorable teaching experience, Tammy relates this story: “One evening during a parent teacher conference marathon early in my career, I noticed parents seemed a bit uneasy and weren’t making eye contact as much as usual. Then, at the grocery store on my way home, the clerk at the check-out also avoided eye contact and was having a hard time keeping a straight face. It was not until I got home that I realized I had Vis-à-Vis wet erase marker on my face (and plenty of it!) from a cleaning session with my overhead projector transparency roll. Doc cam projectors and Smartboards have been a welcome advancement and a much cleaner teaching tool!
Tammy will miss the colleagues, students and families that have become such an integral part of daily living. She says, “The people are truly the heart of a good school! Without mentioning names, I will miss the colleague who belts out songs from the central foyer at 8 a.m., the friend who stays late at work solving life’s problems with me, and the wide-eyed excitement of a kinder kid who has just realized she is reading!"
In her retirement, Tammy says, “I plan to spend time with family and help more on our family farm. I also hope to improve my golf game, read all the fiction books that have accumulated on my bookshelf…and travel!”