Nicole has taught French to grades 3 through 12, including AP French Language for most of her career since 1993. From 2004-2007, she served as a PAR/BTSA full-time Consulting Teacher. In this state-funded program, she provided mentorship and support to newly credentialed teachers in BTSA (Beginning Teacher Support and Assessment) across all subjects and grade levels while also serving as the support provider and primary evaluator of teachers referred to PAR (Peer Assistance and Review) due to not meeting standards. Her work with both the beginning and referred teachers focused on supporting teachers to develop and implement rich, rigorous, research-based and standards-aligned lessons designed to support the learning needs and interests of all students.
Nicole is very active in professional organizations. She serves as president, webmaster and advocacy chair on the board of the Foreign Language Association of Greater Sacramento. She is a key member and of the Leadership Team of the Capital World Language Project and she served on the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages interview committees for the first National Foreign Language Teacher of the Year in 2005 and for the Florence Steiner Leadership in K-12 Education Award in 2007. In 2014, she was named to ACTFL’s Public Relations Committee for the new “Lead With Languages” advocacy program and was also invited to join an ACTFL Focus Group examining how technology can enhance opportunities for students to practice and develop their interpersonal communication skills.
At the state level, Nicole was invited to join the Subject Matter Advisory Panel for Languages Other than English in 2004 (California Commission on Teacher Credentialing), which worked to develop the assessments for teaching candidates seeking credentials in world languages and also to develop the program standards for university teacher preparation programs.
She is the founder of the Read Around the World Program which brings students to local libraries to facilitate a special, multi-lingual reading hour for area children and organizes additional opportunities for students to experience languages and cultures outside of the classroom. She has presented on a variety of topics at local, state, regional, national and international conferences since 1999 and has received several grants for study in France and Canada.
Nicole’s teaching and teacher leadership have been recognized by numerous organizations, including several that recognize excellence across the curriculum (not exclusively world language instruction). Grand Prize winner of the Jane Ortner Educating Through Music Award, Nicole was also named an Outstanding Teacher by both the Foreign Language Association of Greater Sacramento and the California Language Teachers’ Association and was a finalist for the California League of High Schools Educator of the Year in Region 3. In addition, Nicole achieved National Board Certification in 2003 (renewed in 2013) and earned her M.Ed in 2006. In 2012, she was named San Juan USD Teacher of the Year, Sacramento County Teacher of the Year and was one of 12 finalists for California State Teacher of the Year. That same year, she also became a Google Certified Teacher. In fall of 2013, CLTA selected Nicole to represent California as a candidate for Southwest Conference on Language Teaching’s Teacher of the Year. Nicole was named SWCOLT Language Teacher of the Year in 2014 and was subsequently selected as the 2015 ACTFL National Language Teacher of the Year.
She was also one of five teachers nation-wide (representing all subjects and grade levels) selected by National Geographic to appear in their promotional video for their new Geo-Educator community. This selection was based on Nicole’s demonstrated expertise in developing students’ understanding our interconnected world. In March 2014, she was named runner-up in the Hilton Teacher Treks competition (in partnership with the Institute on International Education)–a program that receives hundreds of applications from teachers in grades K-12, across all subject areas. In the award letter, the judges stated that she finished in the top 1% of candidate submissions. She was awarded $1500 to spend for instructional materials. In order to enhance her ability to harness the best Web 2.0 and mobile applications to support language proficiency and production, she chose to start building an in-class lab of portable, wifi-enabled devices by purchasing iPod Touches with the award money.
She currently teaches French at Bella Vista High School in Fair Oaks.
Watch on YouTube: TOY Talks – Nicole Naditz