Tiffany Thompson teaches third grade at Agua Caliente Elementary. She says it was her own third-grade teacher who inspired her.
“I always thought that it would be neat to be a teacher when I was a kid,” says Thompson. She says her students might be surprised to learn that school was not easy for her, but she has fond memories of third grade.
“I loved my third-grade teacher, Mr. Hepler. He just made learning fun,” she says. “He’s really the teacher I aspire to be (and the reason) why I wanted to teach third grade,” explains Thompson. Plus, she adds, “I feel like I laugh a lot in class. That’s why I love my job—this age group is such a fun grade.”
Thompson is a Tucson native who attended school in the Tanque Verde District (but not at the school where she now works). She has two daughters, and says that “taking time to volunteer in (her daughter’s) classroom was really what cemented” her desire to become a teacher.
Student Lilah writes that at the beginning of school, “I wasscared of the new year. I asked around about Miss Thompson, and all I heard was good things.” Lilah explains that her teacher knows her students and encourages them. “To me, this is what a great teacher looks like.”
Thompson says that she likes to have students play get-to-know-you type games at the start of the school year. In addition, she sends out a letter introducing herself so that students will know a little about her, too.
She lets students know that they should just try their best at any task. When it comes to tests and assessments, she tries to remind them, “they know this!”
“I love my job, and the students are what make it great,” Thompson says, and adds, “I would not be able to teach without the support of my daughters, husband, teammates and coworkers!”