TOM ARNTSON » Mr. Arntson's Bio

Mr. Arntson's Bio

I've been teaching for more than twenty years in Orange County and a graduate of the University of California - Irvine with a Masters in early childhood reading and literacy. I'm married with two children, 10 and 15 years of age. I love spending time in the ocean surfing and traveling to faraway countries. I chose education as my profession because I wanted to "be" the teacher I was yearning for in elementary school. I often found myself not completing worksheets, staring at the clock, and waiting for the bell to ring for morning recess so I could throw the football. When I started my educational journey, I wanted my goals to be something that my 10 year old self would enjoy: a challenging, caring, creative environment; where students are encouraged to dream "outside the box", while nurturing their curiosity to be life-long learners and valuable members of our society.
"Make school engaging & fun, the kids will want to come."
I'm a risk taker when it comes to trying new modes of teaching and learning, and I'm not afraid to fail. I've piloted Minecraft Education, where students explore new ways of learning in a virtual world that exposes them to lessons on empathy, mathematics, even projects like "Sustainable Global Goals", where they try to solve 1 of 17 problems governments are trying to solve in third world countries (like clean water). Years ago I led the creation and implementation for students to bring their devices into the classroom (Bring Your Own Device), which helped to spread the word that technology can bring an "extra" motivation and engagement to the school curriculum. Lastly, I've been a creative ambassador for Kahoot!, a free game based learning platform that shows students what they know about a subject or topic, and it also helps teachers understand what their students haven't mastered yet!

I am truly blessed to be working with such talented and dedicated teachers each year at Country Hills who love children and want them to enjoy learning in a caring and supportive environment. This vibrant learning and supportive atmosphere allows each of us to strive for more each day, and to help make the time we have here so magical and rewarding!