Henrico’s Top Teachers – Tish Williams
Deep Run H.S., exceptional education
Tish Williams can thank her dog for her successful teaching career.
Well, sort of.
Williams moved to Henrico seven years ago and was walking the pooch past Deep Run High School one day when she saw a sign on the school's marquee advertising for an instructional assistant. She was looking for a part-time job and applied.
Once she got the job, she quickly developed an appreciation for the school, its environment, students and faculty members. So she went back to school herself, obtained her teacher's certification and became a full-time teacher at Deep Run.
Now as an exceptional education teacher who works with mathematics students, she is able to use two sets of skills for which she's been trained. (She originally earned a degree in social work and served as a case manager before coming to Henrico.)
Working with students who have a variety of disabilities is challenging but rewarding for Williams.
"The most rewarding part is seeing students grow and succeed and reach their goals from year to year," she said. "I see more progress, and in social work you don't always see progress. In teaching, I sometimes see it right away."
The parents of her students see it, too.
"Tish has exceptional knowledge of special education and a passion for making a difference in the lives of her students," one nominator wrote. "Tish always makes time to help our son succeed and has found a very personal way to motivate him, when other teachers have failed to engage him."
Williams works in a collaborative setting with general education teachers, assisting students and sometimes pulling them out of class for more individualized help. She has flexibility to tailor her methods to each individual student's needs and even to try new and creative approaches as she sees fit. The goal always is to return them full-time to mainstream classes. For the students under her watch, that's often the case.
"Today we have a successful student, in mainstream classes, with most of the credit due to Ms. Williams proactive involvement and guidance," the nominator wrote. "She truly made a difference in his life."
Williams won't be job-hunting on any other marquees anytime soon.
"I will do this the rest of my career," she said. "It's a great mix, because I do get to do a little social work and I do get to learn.”
On June 13, the Short Pump Rotary Club partnered with Schnabel Engineering for a day of volunteer work with Rebuilding Together Richmond. Team members (among them [from left] Chris Rufe, Melissa Abraham, Rick Naschold, and Micky Ogburn) completed a variety of repairs and home improvements ranging from painting and landscaping to cabinet installation and fence building.
“It was a privilege to be involved in this project," said club president Melissa Abraham. "The homeowner kept thanking the volunteers, but I think all of us would agree we are the ones who actually benefited. It was an opportunity to help a community member, fellowship with great people and improve our handyman skills." > Read more.
Dr. Even Alexander, a New York Times best-selling author who has been featured on Oprah and Dr. Oz, was in town last week to promote his June 27 talk, "Proof of Heaven," at Glen Allen High School.
Alexander (pictured, at right, while Unity of Bon Air church member Harry Simmons interviews him) has written about what he considers to be his journey through the afterlife.
Tickets to this month's event are $25 and will support the new Bon Secours Hospice House being built later this year. > Read more.
Pixar’s ‘Inside Out’ is a magnificent, emotional ride
Explaining the nuts and bolts of Pixar’s new, exciting, innovative Inside Out – really digging into the film’s shape-and-color explanation of the human mind – would take up the entirety of this review. And probably three or four more (if movies had instruction manuals, Inside Out’s would be the size and general poundage of a cinder block).
It’s a complicated movie. So here’s the gist, in as simply-put terms can be. > Read more.
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CalendarDeep Run Recreation Center will host “Generation Z Games” for ages 8-12 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Enjoy basketball, air hockey, table tennis, Xbox Kinect, PS3, arts and crafts… Full text