Teacher Profile: Mrs. Tatarek
By: Michael Malina
As the first semester chugs along and nears the end, it’s important to reflect back on the school year we’ve had so far and especially the fantastic teachers that make ORVA possible! Of which there is no better way to properly recognize our marvelous teachers than with a teacher spotlight! And so, for our second teacher spotlight, I will be interviewing Mrs. Tatarek, our 10th grade U.S History teacher!
Q: How long have you been teaching U.S. History?
Mrs. Tatarek: This is my 3rd year of teaching U.S History.
Q: When did you realize you wanted to become a teacher?
Mrs. Tatarek: Sometime in my later teenage years (between 17 and 19 years old) and it was for a few reasons. Firstly, I wanted kids and I did not want to be working while they were not in school-my mom had to work nights and mid-nights and I did not want to do the same. Secondly, I wanted to help people, I didn’t want to earn money for other people. Lastly, while I wasn’t the best student and had some of my own academic bruises along the way–I thought I could help other students like myself find their own pathway to success.
Q: Of all history subjects (U.S., World, etc.), or any school subjects in general, which would you say is/are your all-time favorite(s)?
Mrs. Tatarek: I love teaching Geography & Government the most. I suppose for opposing reasons!
I love teaching Geography and teaching students all about distant and faraway places that they have never yet learned about and/or never thought about. I always hope to inspire future travel plans. I also love teaching Government and teaching students just how important and integral the government is in our everyday lives. For example,
- Why can’t you get a drivers license until you’re 16 years old?–The government
- Why can’t you have a credit card until you’re 18?–The government
- Why do you have to stay in school until you’re 16?–The government
Q: When you aren’t teaching, what do you enjoy doing in your spare time?
Mrs. Tatarek: I love to watch TV & read books!
Some of my favorite things to watch are:
- Master Ink
- Anything Holiday Bake-Off
While some of my favorite things to read are:
- Any & all news
- The Hate You Give by Angie Thomas
- Everyone Brave Is Forgiven by Chris Cleave
Q: Do you have a favorite season or a time of year?
Mrs. Tatarek: I am split on what season is my favorite. I love summer because I own a boat. But I also love winter because I go crazy for Christmas decorations and decorate every nook & cranny I can. A friend recently asked me how long it takes me to decorate; it took over a week and I am still not done.
- The front room is full of traditional Christmas decorations
- The kitchen is all things peppermint and peppermint decoration.
- The dining room is fancy red, green and gold.
- The downstairs bathroom is blue Christmas.
- The staircase going upstairs is my daughter’s collection of nutcrackers–she loves them too!
- The balcony overlooking the front room is lined with Christmas-themed stuffed animals.
Q: What (to you) is most rewarding about being a teacher?
Mrs. Tatarek: Helping students with their personal lives; helping them with academics is awesome but helping them out with real life is always what sticks with me the most.
Q: Other thoughts or anecdotal wisdoms you’d like to share?
Mrs. Tatarek: Time is so precious—-you can replace almost anything except for time-use it wisely!
Also I know everyone else in the world hates it—but I love Comic Sans font & use it way too often!
Thank you very much for letting me do our second teacher spotlight on you, Mrs. Tatarek, and Thank you for being one of ORVA’s marvelous teachers!!