TUCSON, Ariz. (KGUN) — University of Arizona Athletics and KGUN 9 are proud to present the nominees for the Teacher of the Year Award.
Jose Garcia Salcido is a physics teacher at Amphitheater High School and a finalist for the award.
"Okay, it's working," Salcido said to a group of students working in his classroom.
The way Salcido teaches physics at Amphi is working as well.
"I love teaching," said Salcido. "I'm always, I guess, I think about it. I'm always trying to make improvements."
An innovator and one of nine finalists for the Arizona Athletics Teacher of the Year Award, Salcido says he's using a unique two-tiered approach to teaching.
"One of them is personalized learning," explained Salcido. "Students learn at their own pace. That's especially important because students are missing school because of COVID."
He also evaluates his students using a verbal quiz.
"Which allows me, I think, to peer down into do they really get it or not," said Salcido. "I can tweak the questions right here. That way I make sure they understand."
He says the best part of teaching is when his students share his passion for the subject.
"When they get excited about physics, when they get excited and say oh wow," Salcido said. "Because I do feel that way about nature. Just to share that passion. Understanding that we are alive and we can explore and learn. Just to have them see and make those connections, that's the best part."
The winner of the Arizona Athletics Teacher of the Year Award will be announced March 5, at the final Arizona Men's Basketball game.