Academy of Tucson is proud of our ‘A’ average rating for our district and for our close-knit community of dedicated teachers and staff. We are launching a series of profiles about team members from all three of our Academy of Tucson public charter schools – Elementary, Middle and High School. Read on to learn about one of the educators making our small schools creative and caring.
Mrs. Dikinis, Art Teacher, Yearbook Advisor, Study Hall/Independent Study Supervisor, Academy of Tucson High School
An 18-year faculty member, at Academy of Tucson High School, Mrs. Dikinis brings creativity and spark to everything she does. Each semester she themes her Art classes to inspire and ignite her students. The coursework changes year over year so her students, Freshmen through Seniors, explore multiple mediums and styles of art throughout their High School journey. Painting, screen printing, surrealist collages…Mrs. Dikinis awakens her students to Art as expression and appreciation in a myriad of ways.
When asked what makes Deanna Dikinis so very special one Academy of Tucson colleague had a lot to say, “Deanna is a guiding example of a lifelong learner. She came to teaching later in life, so she is more open to criticism or feedback because she sees it as another learning experience. She takes students' feedback seriously, too. Her units in art are either driven from new modes that she is trying to learn or from what students want to learn.
Many students take art all four years. For those students, they have the opportunity to treat it more like an independent study class as a senior, diving deep into an art form that they're interested in. Lastly, she makes sure students' artwork is showcased around the city, at libraries, courthouses, city halls, etc., as well as encourages students to enter their artwork in local/national/international competitions She is one of my favorite humans of all time..”
When not teaching Art, Mrs. Dikinis can be found supervising study hall for maximum independent study success or supporting the Yearbook Class as they hone their photography skills. Her guiding principle in all these efforts, is to recognize her students as a garden – ready for growth. And wouldn’t you know, she grows every year, too.