Teacher Spotlight – Science James


Courtesy of Crystal

Crystal Tung

Mrs. James, better known as Science James is a 7th grade science teacher here at Rio Norte. She is a motivated and inspiring teacher who is also a part of house Yeti. She loves spending time with her students and teaching science. 

Although she is an amazing science teacher who isn’t afraid to help her students, she hadn’t always wanted to be one. Originally, she had wanted to be a genetics counselor. Science James, however, wanted to broaden herself and “share my love of genetics with more [kids] by becoming a teacher [and] getting more kids into science…” It was also people like one of her math teachers that inspired her. Her math teacher Mr. Mansfield was a fun, caring, and encouraging teacher who really inspired her to be the teacher that she is today. 

Despite the change in careers, Science James has always had a love for science. She, and many other science lovers all agree that it is enjoyable, interesting, and exciting, with Science James stating, “I love that in genetics there are so many different explanations for something to happen … I love that for labs it is an exploring aspect. Then if you didn’t get the expected outcome, try again and explore further.” 

In addition to this, Science James also has a family. She tries to spend as much time with her family as possible. To succeed in this, she tries not to answer her emails over the weekend and tries to do different activities with her family. She loves having her ‘mom time’ and helping her kids when she isn’t working on school. 

For many teachers, teaching is an amazing experience and they enjoy it pretty much every second of the experience. Many teachers, however, have a favorite part of teaching. For Science James, she enjoys “celebrating students, exploring labs with them and seeing the students’ growth of the topic, talking with students about science topics, and encouraging them to be the best they can be.” 

Science James also ‘runs’ Rio Norte’s National Honors’ Junior Society, more commonly known as NJHS. This program helps prepare students for Honors’ Society in high school. This is an exclusive program for kids with a GPA 3.7 or higher, and can help students when applying for college. Science James expresses her love for this program and its students by stating, I love seeing that students are keeping up their grades, and seeing the service project of card writing. I love all the beautiful cards that the kids made going to senior citizen homes.” 

She has also said that she likes “cooking, hiking, playing games with my kids, silly dancing with my kids and traveling to new places.” These are all extremely fun and important things that all families should start doing. Science James is an amazing teacher whom many look up to. If you have any questions that you would like to ask her regarding science or NJHS, you can email her at [email protected] or visit her in room D-11.