Golden Apple Award: Michelle de Villiers, Notre Dame High School

CHATTTANOOGA, Tenn. (WDEF) – If you ask a student what their favorite subject is in school, art is a very popular answer. Having a good art teacher can inspire a lifetime of creativity. Michelle de Villliers is sculpting the next generation of painters, illustrators and more at Notre Dame High School.

Jamie Goodhart is the Notre Dame Assistant Head of School.

She says, “(Her) Honesty is absolutely amazing. She teaches all of our Visual Arts here, runs an amazing program, and focuses on creativity with our kids.”

Michelle de Villiers, “I try to keep things fun. I’m probably complicated, and I’m probably easy going. All of that at once. I have a husband, John. He’s awesome, and I have a daughter Marigold. She’s a sophomore here, and my son Briar is an eighth grader at Normal Park. A lot of kids are kind of nervous about drawing. This is a quick way to get them drawing without any consequences or nerve-wracking moments.”

Ella Lovelace is a Junior at Notre Dame.

She explains, “I have had Miss D for the past two years, and she was always one of my favorite teachers, because she just made the classroom and the class very comfortable, and you knew that you could always come to her for anything you needed.”

11th Ally Pricer chips in, “She likes to include everyone and make everyone like do the most creative thing they can do. Her room, just the environment, inspires everyone to like, do it. The way she acts around everyone helps them to spark that creativity as well.”

Senior Blake Mathews says, “Miss D is like the greatest teacher you could imagine, very loving. The most fun teacher I’ve ever had by far, and you come to class, and it’s just an environment of creativity and overall, just fun.

Senior Wesley Frogg says, “She’s been with me from the beginning, and she’s the one who really got me into design, and that’s what I’m going to school for. So, she just really inspired me. Well Ms. D is amazing.”

Michelle concludes, “I want them to remember that they can try anything; anything. And you never know. I also want them to look at the world around them. Not just… be in the world, but actually participate and see what’s around them. See what’s happening and find common ground with people. You may not be the same as someone, but art can connect people and so can other things.”


Categories: Chattanooga, Education, Featured, Golden Apple Award, Golden Apple Award 2022-2023, Local News