Educator of the week

Tameka Woodruff 
Oxon Hill Middle School

Tameka Slade Woodruff was born and raised in the small town of Surry County in Virginia. As a child, she loved to read, play sports, ride ATV’s and go crabbing at the pier. Tameka’s mother, a retired educator, instilled in her a love for learning. Her dad, an extension agent, introduced her to a plethora of outdoor activities  – activities which she still very much enjoys.  

When it came time to pursue a college education, Tameka chose to study chemistry at Norfolk State University in Virginia. After completing a couple of courses, she changed her major – a decision she regrets but one that she uses as fuel to teach her students to always fight through tough times. Tameka eventually earned a bachelor’s degree in interdisciplinary studies and a master’s degree in divergent learning from Columbia College in South Carolina.

Tameka began her teaching career approximately ten years ago. She has taught in both South Carolina and Maryland and recalls a “comedic” first year in the field. She made every mistake one could make but refused to give up on something so significant. She is now in her third year as the STEM Coordinator at Oxon Hill Middle School in Maryland, where the bulk of her job is to encourage students to be more involved in STEM. Tameka formulates partnerships with various organizations and STEM professionals, such as NASA and the U.S. Naval Academy. She has set a goal to ensure student achievement in all subjects and also ensure that STEAM literacy is evident in 100% of the classrooms at Oxon Hill. Tameka feels that it can be accomplished through providing more consistent STEM professional development of the teachers. She further explains, “my goal could be summed up as more, more, more … more student achievement – more teacher professional development, more recognition, more STEM!”

Outside of work, Tameka enjoys spending time with her husband and children and continues to participate in outdoor activities. She is due to complete her Ph.D. in educational leadership from Northcentral University in July of 2016.

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