Tina Garza spends much of her free time outdoors, but it’s not for the fresh air. It’s for the inspiration she gets for creating science related activities.
“When I was young, my parents always let me go out on the farm to explore,” Garza said. “It made me stay curious. When I’m outdoors, I think about what’s going on, and how I can bring back those ideas to Harlingen.”
Garza is the executive director of curriculum and science content specialist at the Harlingen Consolidated Independent School District. She assists in developing the science curriculum for all grade levels, and updates teachers on the most innovative ways to engage students, Garza said.
“It’s about making students excited about science,” Garza said. “Tying in what’s happening outside of school into the classroom, so when they leave they see science around them.”
Her love for science is present in anything she does. Even when traveling with her family, she is always looking for something to spark her imagination, Garza said.
Garza has been with HCISD for 18 years, and was encouraged by her parents to pursue a career in education, Garza said. Both of her parents were math teachers, but she decided to go against the grain and specialize in science. She credits them with helping her get to where she is today.
“They always encouraged me to question things,” Garza said. “My mother was a teacher, and my father was an administrator. I had the best of both worlds, and they continue to help guide me today.”