Marisa Willman brings her passion for Spanish to the classroom [Fulton/Highland]

I was waiting outside of Thoroughbred Transmissions and Auto Care in Scaggsville where I was having my pick-up truck and utility trailer inspected. That's where I met Tim Willman.

It turns out that he and his wife have had two kids graduate from Reservoir High School, Tim, who is going to the University of Connecticut, where he is also playing football; and Marisa Willman, a Spanish language teacher at Reservoir.

Marisa said that she and her family moved here when she was 11 years old. She attended Lime Kiln Middle and graduated from Reservoir High School. She is a graduate of the University of Maryland, where she majored in Spanish language and literature with a minor in education.

I asked Marisa how she came to choose teaching as a career. "At first, I wasn't sure about which career path I would choose. In high school, I never saw myself becoming a teacher," she replied.

But, she had developed a real passion for the Spanish language and "what better way to share this passion than as a teacher." She said her goal is to make learning the language fun and useful.

"It's so rewarding to have my students come into my class at the beginning of the year hesitant about speaking Spanish, and then to see them leave at the end of the year much more fluent than they were before," she said.

A fun fact about Marisa: She is the first Reservoir alumni to return as a teacher. Her first choice of where to work after graduation was in the Howard County Public School System. She said that she was very lucky that RHS had a Spanish teaching position open when she was applying.

"I interviewed and they offered me the position, I accepted it right away," she said.

Besides teaching, Marisa is involved with the Gator Poms and the Student Government Association. Marisa is definitely a Gator for life!

For fifth graders, the move to middle school can be daunting. The staff at is having an open house on Thursday Aug. 22, from 5:30 to 7 p.m. It may be a good time to take your rising 6th grader to their new school for a walk-around so their first day of class Aug. 26 won't seem so intimidating. There will also be a new-student orientation from 9 to 10 a.m., also on Aug. 22.

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