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Campus hires veteran teacher

Due to the increased amount of students enrolled on campus, the need for another math teacher arose. Principal Gary Schultz hired Tina Nakashian to share the load with the current math teacher, Mike Fenton.

Although Nakashian wanted to work in the pharmaceutical field or physiology as a child, her mindset changed in college. She decided to teach Pre-Algebra and Algebra I to both junior high and high school students who struggle as she did in class.

Nakashian received a Bachelor’s Degree (B.A.) in mathematics and a Credential for teaching students when English is their second language (CLAD). She also has a Master’s degree (M.A.) in curriculum and instruction with an emphasis in mathematics, along with a Certificated of Advanced Studies in Educational Technology. She spent nine years working to obtain these degrees from California State University, Fresno.

Fenton informed Nakashian about the opportunities on campus, while they attended a class at Fresno Pacific University together.

“The school has been a blessing to me and my family,” Nakashian said. “I like being around other believers who support me and who think the same way.”

Although Nakashian previously taught at California State University, Fresno, Laton High, Reedley Community College and Sunnyside High School, she hoped for another opportunity.

“I was praying to teach at a different school,” Nakashian said. “The Lord gave me an answer when I heard about Fresno Christian. I like the smallness of the school, because I can connect to the students more and it’s a benefit that I can openly share my faith.”

Nakashian adjusts to campus

Nakashian teaches Math 1 and Pre-Algebra for a total of four periods a day to junior high and high school students.

“I am looking forward to helping the students this year,” Nakashian said. “I want the students to become more academically and spiritually ready for their next step in education.”

Experiences from both high school and college inspired Nakashian’s teaching methods.

“Nakashian’s teaching techniques are very interesting,” Jennifer Powell, ’10, said. “She has different ways of teaching us how to do the problems than the book does. Sometimes her methods make it easier to do the problems.”

When not grading or planning for classes, Nakashian stresses the importance of family time. She has been married to her husband for four years and has a two-year-old son, Aren.

“I like to put work aside and take my son to the park to play sports with him,” Nakashian said. “My goals outside of school is to be the mom my son needs and to be good to my family.”

Nakashian plans to remain on campus for several years and motivate students’ desires to learn independently.

“Nakashian is an outstanding addition to the FC mathetmatics department,” Fenton said. “She has the experience of a veteran teacher and holds as much excitement about the teaching and learning of mathematics as anyone I’ve met. ”

Fenton observed Nakashian’s methods first hand for an entire semester and believes her future on campus is long-term.

“Those in the FC community who have taken the time to observe what Nakashian does and how she does it, see her passion for stuents,” Fenton said, “and for their understanding of the subject she teaches. When someone cares that much about you and your classmates, it’s hard not to be thankful.”

For other teacher profiles check out Benjamin Dang’s Sep. 15, 2006, article Teacher displays dual aspects, or Sophia Cook’s Oct. 30, 2006, article, New Spanish teacher to wed in June.

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