NBCT » *Ms. Tricia Togliatti

*Ms. Tricia Togliatti


I have been teaching in some way, shape, or form for over the past three decades.  I started out teaching at private preschools for the first several years and wanted to move on so I taught at a private kindergarten and still knew I wanted more…

I graduated Suma Cum Laude from the University of Saint Francis with extra endorsements in science and social studies, as well as a letter of approval in learning disabilities.

I worked at Reed Custer Middle School in 6th and 7th grade.  Additionally, I taught in their after school program and summer school.  I loved it there, but I wanted more...

When I heard of a position opening up in my home town in 2000 I eagerly jumped on board. I knew it would be the right fit for me, having been through the school system here in Coal City I knew how high the standards are and I wanted to rise to that bar of excellence.

I began in third grade and spent my first two years in the Coal City School District happily on the third-grade team.  After that, I moved down to first grade and have found my niche with our 6 and 7-year-olds at our Early Childhood Center. Additionally, I have taught and coordinated the after school assistance program and summer school the years it has been needed.  But I wanted more...

I went on to graduate Suma Cum Laude with a master’s degree as a reading specialist from Olivet Nazarene University and continued to teach first grade. I took classes here and there based on my student’s needs.  I was unceasing in my desire to learn and to become the best teacher I could be. But I still wanted more…

I decided to set forth on the monumental task of becoming National Board certified. It was a daunting task but with my drive to learn and the encouragement and support, I felt from our administration I knew it was the natural next step forward for me.

That goal was attained in 2019 and I am very proud of it. However, there is always room to improve, even now. So I have to ask myself what’s next because I always want more.  I want more not only for myself, and for our district, but for our future.  A future that will someday soon be in the hands of these 6 and 7-year-olds. Therefore my next adventure awaits.

Why did you want to become National Board Certified?

I wanted to become an NBCT because the administration here in Coal City highly values the National Board process and certification. I felt encouraged to try and it felt like it was a natural next step forward to improve my teaching and the learning of my students.  After getting my master’s degree as a reading specialist it was the next big challenge for myself.
What was the most difficult aspect of going through the process?

The most difficult aspect of going through the process was balancing family responsibilities and commitments with my work schedule and the National Board timeline. It is time-consuming and none of the classes can be done over the summer.  It all has to be done during the school year when you have an active class.  I found myself wishing for the free time of summer to work on it.

What was the most rewarding part of going through the process?

The most rewarding part is that the process itself changed me. It made me look with a magnifying glass at my teaching, the curriculum, the students, and all factors that can make or break a lesson and the entire learning process. I question everything and look for the why behind all things we do. I am proud to have become a better teacher for my students and to know I am now amongst an elite group of teachers who are all doing what is best for our students.
What advice would you give others that are thinking about starting the process?

My advice is to just do it. Do it to improve yourself.  Do it to help your students.  My advice is to just do it, don’t be afraid of the challenge. The rewards considerably outweigh all the hard work.
How has this made you a better educator?

This process has made me a better educator because our students are changing, family dynamics and the world we live in are changing, the process of becoming a National Board Certified Teacher ensures that as teachers we too are changing.