Silver Apple Awards

Teacher receives Silver Apple Award on last day at school

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Tiah Bialik has wanted to be a teacher since she was in high school. However, she went on to become a law clerk. But after years of working in law, she decided to pursue her passion for teaching. The moment she took a teaching position at Magnet Traditional in Phoenix she knew she belonged and her students responded. 

1. City of Residence: Phoenix, Arizona

2. Why did you decide to get into teaching? 

I got into education and teaching to help children learn and find themselves. I want my students to realize how important education is, and what endless goals they can make with education, and learning. I wanted to make a difference in each child's life, even if it a small difference, it's a difference. 

3. What is your favorite teaching moment? 

One of my favorite teaching moments would be when a student is struggling with a concept or an idea. Then I work with him/her and try to explain it in a different way. Then that student or students finally understand and get the concept or idea. The best part would be when that student explains how he/she got to the answer in their own words.  

4. How did you feel when you realized you won the Silver Apple award?

There were many different feelings I had when I realized I had won the Silver Apple award, but the first feeling was shock. After the shock, I feel lucky and honored. I never expected this especially since it is my first year teaching and I'm still learning. Knowing that I have made such a difference is a small amount of time, I realize that I have found my calling and know I can't wait for many more years teaching great kids. 

5. What do you plan on doing with the $500 grant?

I plan on putting that money in a saving account and use the money for educational purposes for my students in the future. 

6. Please share one of your best practices in the classroom with us. 

One of my best practices that I have used in my classroom would be peer partner sharing. This allows students to work with their peers in a great environment, that allows me as a teacher to see what students are comprehending based on the lesson being taught. Students are grouped together to help each other. Higher academic students will work with students at a lower academic level, or with a partner that helped expand their comprehension.  

7. What advice, if any, would you give a new teachers starting their career in the teaching industry?

Since it is my first year teaching, my advice to other new teachers coming into the teaching industry would don't be afraid to change things up, try new ideas if what you are doing isn't working. Remember that your first year is the hardest but the most rewarding. It's worth it, trust me. Look what one year has done for a new teacher like me. 

8. What was the greatest life lesson you've learned through your teaching experience that has affected your personal life?

The greatest life lesson I've learned since I've been teaching would be to hold each student to a higher standard then others. I have held myself to a higher standard, and that working hard makes a difference. I don't expect all my students to be on honor roll, but I do expect them to do the best they can. If their best is a "C" then that is wonderful. Students need to remember that they should not compare themselves to other students but to themselves alone. The only person judging their progress and can hold them accountable is themselves. Each one of my students know that I hold them to a high standard, and to do the best they can. To always try their best, no excuses. 

Thank you, and give thanks to Javier, the Dairy Council, and everyone at Channel 3 for making this an amazing experience, one I will NEVER forget. My husband told me I was the first teacher to ever win this award that had less than 2 years of teaching experience. That is just amazing, and I'm truly honored. Thank you for this award.