Teacher Spotlight: Mr. Tessier


Sebastian Avalos

The majority of the staff at Montclair High School have been teaching for a long time. They have a lot of experience in teaching and working with the kids here at MHS. However, there are still staff members that are just at the beginning of their teaching careers. Nathan Tessier has been teaching for 3 years and is one of the newest teachers on campus. He teaches both Government and US History and after one semester under his belt at MHS, he shared his thoughts about his career choice, teaching habits, and how he is adapting to the environment here.


 Tessier found his passion for teaching when he was in high school. “I taught as a tutor for 6th graders all four years when I was in high school,” Tessier explained, “ When I got to college I realized that public health wasn’t for me so I finished the year with my public health major, and then went back to school and got my teaching credentials”. Tessier also mentioned that during the process of deciding what to teach, he was stuck between social sciences and science. He enjoyed the sciences like Biology and Chemistry however he ultimately chose to teach Government and Us History as he was most confident within those subjects. “What matters most is being confident in the ability to learn the subject despite just teaching it.” Tessier believes there is always room for improvement.


Before Tessier came to Montclair, he taught at other schools like Upland and Ontario high school. However, Tessier was very excited to get this position here at Montclair. “I was excited because the other staff members that taught here seemed like they really enjoyed doing what they did,” Tessier explained, “ and teaching two subjects that I was really into helped make it fun for me.” Tessier also made note that the students here at MHS were very compassionate and welcoming. “Building a rapport and connecting with the classes was really enjoyable. Once the classes started asking questions it showed that they were engaging with the content and that they wanted to learn the material.”


Each class in its own way does something unique to get students involved. After teaching here for one semester, Tessier has made it his goal to keep his class interactive. “One of the things I try to do with a class is I try to find what each class likes and dislikes. For example, the late sign I would use in class was well received by 4th and 7th period last semester but 1st period hated it. Each class is very different so finding that balance of making the class fun but not annoying is really important to me.” Tessier also mentioned on Fridays (or Mondays depending on if they got to it or not) that he would talk about the most recent news with the class in order to get their opinions, discuss the topic with others around them, and relate it back to the material that he’s teaching. “ While we do these discussions, I try to make sure that both sides are understood by everyone so that each argument is understood. Sometimes to get the conversation going, I’ll play devil’s advocate and pick the least popular side to get people to come up with a new opinion.” While most teachers go straight to business, Tessier keeps his class fun and informative with his unique teaching style. Thanks to the compassionate students, the energetic staff, and the welcoming atmosphere at Montclair, Tessier feels welcomed with open arms to this school and plans to teach here for as long as he can.