Degrees and Certifications:

Mr. Nikolas Tsolomitis

My name is Nikolas Tsolomitis, and I feel fortunate to be a part of both BHS and WMS this year!
A little about my academic and professional history... I went through the Bainbridge Island School District from second grade on and graduated from BHS in 2007. After I graduated, I chose to attend Gonzaga University in Spokane, WA. This was easily one of the best decisions of my life! I completed my undergraduate work and graduated in the spring of 2011 with a B.A. in History and a minor in Religious Studies. I loved GU so much that I decided to do my graduate work there as well. I completed my thirteen-month Master's in Initial Teaching in July of 2012. I returned back to Bainbridge and began substituting in the district and was fortunate to be a part of the Woodward staff during the fall 2013 semester as a long-term substitute and joined the Sakai family full-time starting with the 2014 school year, where I began teaching 6th grade ELA & SS. After teaching 5th grade ELA and SS last year, I will be teaching 9th grade English at BHS and 8th grade English at WMS!
I am married to my beautiful wife, Bree. My stepdaughter, Addi, is a wonderful beacon of happiness and joy and too much energy to contain. During the summer of 2022, we wonderful baby boy to our family, who we named Thorin (Yes, after the Oakenshield from The Hobbit, we're big nerds)! I will talk about them frequently because I love them so much and I want to model positive relationships with students.
A few other tidbits about my personality... I am a massive nerd who enjoys all things Marvel and Dungeons & Dragons, goes to Emerald City Comic Con almost every year, and tries to figure out how to connect learning in the classroom to gaming and pop culture. I'm sometimes called the King of the Nerds and have a student-made crown in my classroom to prove it. I also am really passionate about sports, especially baseball and the Seattle Mariners (I am a season-ticket holder with them and go to games frequently). I love to support the Seattle Sounders, as well as watch football (I do fantasy football so I don't always support one team). I also look forward to rooting for the Seattle Kraken more! I am a passionate Gonzaga basketball fan and can usually be found sporting at least one GU-related article of clothing every game day during the basketball season. Of course, being a nerd, history buff, and Language Arts teacher, I also enjoy reading many books, especially fantasy and science fiction books. My two favorite series are the Wheel of Time series by Robert Jordan & Brandon Sanderson and the Redwall series by Brian Jacques. Other notable favorites include John Grisham novels, the Robert Langdon books, Harry Potter, and certain historical fiction and adaptations.
I want to focus on building community in our classroom this year. The current political and social landscape is filled with strife, disagreement, and self-importance. I want students to learn to value their community, contribute to it in a positive manner, and be accepting of others. There will be a lot of "new" this year, with it being a new school, a new way of learning, new curriculums... like I said, lots of new! And new can be uncomfortable, but we will work through it, together.
The non-academic focus for this school year will be centered on two components: growth and resilience. The last few years of learning during a pandemic and the years that followed have been challenging in many ways for teachers, staff, students, and parents. This year will hopefully move closer to pre-pandemic learning and education, but with the lessons of the last three years in mind. We will attempt as often as possible to engage in a productive struggle for learning. Learning is a thinking process, and students should have a safe and supportive environment where they engage with appropriately challenging materials and receive the necessary support to have the opportunity to succeed. By putting forth the required effort and asking for help when it is needed, students will see growth and will demonstrate achievement.
I look forward to seeing you in class and being a part of your fantastic journey of discovery and learning!