Teacher Tuesday: Salena Tabor


Allison Mi, Copy Editor

Q: Tell us a little about yourself.

A: “This is my ninth year of teaching and fifth year at Huron. I started out as a Technology and Yearbook teacher. I worked really hard to get my job with Ann Arbor Public Schools, and it was always a dream as a kid to be an art teacher in Ann Arbor. This year has been really challenging; I have learned how important it is for people to have arts and crafts in their lives. Something I take very seriously is my yearly initiatives to rid my vocabulary of unnecessary or harmful language. Words I have eliminated in the past include ‘you guys,’ ‘dude’ and ‘crazy.’ The word I have chosen this year is ‘can’t’ and it has by far been the most challenging, but it has been fun to come up with alternatives and get my family to participate, too!”


Q: Have you always been interested in teaching?

A: “Yes. My Grandma and Great Grandma were both teachers. They taught for over 30 years and I never heard a single complaint from them. We would see people everywhere we went that knew them, they were like local celebrities! I grew up creating worksheets and lesson plans, and teaching stuffed animals, my great grandpa and cousins who were willing to be my students.”


Q: Do you have any advice for students during this difficult time?

A: “I have learned how important it is to surround myself with the right people. In order to achieve balance, we have to get varying perspectives. It’s best not to surround oneself with only certain types of people with one reality. Strive to see the good in everyone, even those who are not at all like you.”


Q: What/who inspired you to become a teacher?

A: “Though there were many important teachers in my life over the years, my 11th and 12th grade English teacher Mr. Steve Walters was always the most inspirational. He was kind, funny, sensitive to the needs of others while also holding students accountable. He had us journal every day for the first five minutes, no matter what. There was so much value in that. I love that man.” 


Q: What do you do in your free time?

A: “Currently, I am taking a master’s class at Eastern which takes up a lot of time. I recently rescued a kitty that was living in a tree in my backyard. I named him Nate (after my favorite Office character), and he’s been taking up a significant part of my days with his cuteness. I also like to go thrift shopping, hiking, swimming, biking and obviously since I’m an art teacher, I enjoy painting, drawing, making polymer clay jewelry and most recently have taken up digital drawing and painting with my new tablet!”


Q: What is one motto you will always live by?

A: “People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” – Maya Angelou


Q: What is your favorite teaching moment?

A: “I’ve had so many wonderful memories as an educator — so many laughs, field trips and tears, too. I think my favorite has to be March 2020’s DP art exhibition. The day we set up for the show, my students were exhausted, but they worked so hard and to see it all come together was a truly magical experience. My heart was bursting with love on that day.”