Addie Burris

Ms. Sincox discussing a Key Club meeting.

Have you ever met someone as passionate about science as Ms. Sincox? I got a chance to sit down and interview her, and here’s what I learned.

Do you like teaching, and if so, why do you like it?
The thing I enjoy most about teaching is what I call the light bulb moment. Where somebody has been struggling with a concept and then there’s just this like one moment where they go, ‘Oh, I get it now.’ My favorite part of teaching is getting students to see something as difficult and really, like, persevere and then understand it eventually.

What is your favorite class to teach, and why do you like teaching it?
I used to say that chemistry was my favorite because I actually have a separate degree in chemistry. So I focused on chemistry when I was in college and got a physics minor. But as I completed my master’s in physics teaching, the more I learned about physics, and physics teaching, the more I enjoyed it. So I really take chemistry and physics as some of my favorites to teach because they’re the ones that I have some advanced training in. And, I like teaching upper-level skills to high schoolers that might go on to take more upper-level science in college or go into a STEM field.

How long have you been teaching at Mineral Point?
This is my fourth official year here. I student-taught with Mr. Austin. What was that like seven years ago now? And then, I taught for three years at Door County and moved back when Mr. Austin was able to hire me when he got promoted to principal.

What has been your favorite memory since starting teaching at Mineral Point?
Weirdly enough, this is my first “normal” year here because my first year ended with the school shutting down for our last quarter… and this feels like our first real year where things aren’t focused on COVID restrictions and whatnot. I would say really just how the community rallied around when we were working online. Everyone was just focused on continuing student learning and the community parade and the graduation parade, and things like that, where I got to see how strong our community is. And then, of course, all the nonschool things that are really fun where I get to see students excel outside of the classroom. So watching the girls win state tournaments and things like that are some of my favorite memories.

Where did you go to college, and what was your major?
I went to college at Edgewood College in Madison. I went there for chemistry and science teaching. I had two majors and two minors. I had chemistry with a biochemical concentration major, and then I had a major called broadfield science teaching with physical science, including chemistry. Then, I had to get a minor in secondary education, which was basically all the things to certify me to be a teacher. [After that] I got a minor in physics, which allowed me to teach physics.

How long did you go to college?
Four and a half years of classes and then a semester of student teaching, so five years total.

Do you go to any Mineral Point sporting events, and what’s your favorite one to watch?
I would say the ones that I find most interesting are the ones that I played when I was in middle school, volleyball and basketball. I have really enjoyed taking tickets at games because I get to see parents of students and other community members and just make those connections. It’s always nice to show students that I’m actively engaged in what they are interested in as a human being and seeing them do other things outside of school, too.

Why did you choose Mineral Point?
So I have always loved this area. I would say I became invested in the community when I was in 4-H and FFA growing up. I got to know a lot of people around the county. I feel like I’m part of the community here with family in the area. I would say that Mineral Point is really welcoming to outsiders, even if you’re not from Mineral Point yourself. Everyone here is really open and welcoming, and I feel like I’ve really become part of that community. That makes me love teaching here and want to stay here.

This interview has been edited for length and clarity.