MNPS Voices: Mikki Ford

MNPS Voices: Mikki Ford, STEM Teacher, McMurray Middle School
Posted on 02/21/2024
Teacher Mikki Ford

Teacher Mikki Ford

Mikki Ford didn’t know she wanted to be a teacher until she was almost 40. After spending time volunteering in her own children’s classrooms, she found that not only did she enjoy teaching, but she also was very good at it. While her journey may have started a bit later in life, Ford found her passion for teaching STEM.

Today, Ford can be found teaching sixth to eighth graders at McMurray Middle School. Beyond her regular STEM teachings, she also spearheads the school’s Drone and Virtual Reality (VR) clubs. Every day, she infuses her lessons with interactive experiences designed to ignite each student’s curiosity so they can find their own passions. 

STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) is vital for equipping students with the skills needed for the modern world. One of Ford’s goals is to show students the breadth and practical applications of STEM in everyday life.

“STEM concepts are used in all areas and industries, and that’s what I’m trying to show my classes. There is a place for every student in STEM," Ford said.
Teacher Mikki Ford working and smiling at classroom table with students

Ford and other STEM teachers at Metro Schools are also teaching and preparing students for jobs that haven’t even been conceived yet. By fostering curiosity, providing hands-on experiences, and showing real-world applications and opportunities, MNPS STEM education is paving the way for a future of innovators and problem-solvers in our community.

In today’s digital age, technology plays a crucial role in all education, not just STEM. Ford incorporates a wide variety of technology and tools into her curriculum to enhance learning. From coding robots to designing rollercoasters to simpler lessons of building catapults, students are exposed to the endless possibilities and reach of technology.

Inspiring Students to Find Solutions

Ford’s lessons commonly include group projects and emphasize collaboration and teamwork, so students learn and work together as one to solve complex problems, find each other’s strengths, and achieve common goals.

“Mikki brings the world alive in her classroom. Her students are actively engaged in solving the problems of the 21st century and beyond,” said Dr. Jennifer Berry, MNPS’s director of STEAM (which also incorporates arts) and science. “In her room, students can see their own potential and learn the skills and knowledge necessary to achieve it.”

Ford's journey stands as a testament to the transformative power of discovering one's passion. Her dedication to STEM education and, more importantly, to her students serves as an inspiration to all.

At McMurray Middle School and other schools throughout MNPS, students are not just learning about STEM — they're embracing it with confidence, empowered by the unwavering support of educators like Ford.

Teacher Mikki Ford at class table with several students

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