Phone: 520-269-4651


Degrees and Certifications:

BA -Kindergarten-Grade 8 - University of Arizona MS Math and Science Endorsement Gifted Endorsement Gifted K-12 Endorsement M.Ed. Educational Counseling with an emphasis: gifted - University of Phoenix Google 1 and 2, Google Instructor Certification

Mrs. Niki Tilicki

Welcome to Lab 21!

My name is Niki Tilicki and I will be your child's 5th grade teacher this year. I have been teaching in the Amphitheater School District since 1992, and I love my job!

Defining Moment in Education

Ever since I was a fourth-grader, I knew I wanted to be a teacher. My mom was my best teacher, my hero, and my reason for this career choice. Having an allergy caused me to be sent home from school at least once per week. On those days, I spent time in my mom's classroom where I watched her captivate her students as if she was a magician! That is what I wanted! Once I began teaching, I discovered that I have a passion for meeting the needs of gifted children. Because of this, I studied further to earn a degree in educational counseling with a specific study in working with gifted children. This has sparked my love and passion for helping all students love school!

See me in elementary school!

Core Educational Beliefs

I believe that every child has a right to learn and no one has the right to take that away. Children need to learn in an environment that is filled with fun, with the freedom to choose, the power to inspire and holds a sense of belonging for everyone. If I can teach a child to fall in love with reading, see a true passion for writing and develop an insatiable curiosity about math, then I have helped to guide a child to grow towards a love for learning and thus a lust for life!
 "Dream the impossible, be passionate and achieve it, and always remember: I believe in you!" - Niki Tilicki

Prior Experience

My journey in teaching began in 1988 at Satori School for the Gifted where I taught pre-school-aged children. This is where I developed a sense of where I wanted to go with my education. From here, I began my student teaching at Los Amigos in Sunnyside. This was a great start for me and an opportunity to use my 12 years of Spanish study. I began teaching in Amphitheater at Rio Vista in 1992 in the 5th grade, the next year, 6th grade, and many years of summer school instructing in grades K-8. It was here that I learned that I have a passion for math! In 1999, I moved to Wilson where I taught 6th-grade math, science, reading, writing, and 4th grade as well. Now, at Innovation Academy, I teach 5th grade along with middle school math and I am so honored to be here!


Professional Accomplishments 

Tucson Values Teachers Board Member - secretary 2021-present

TREC - teacher leader 2020-present

Scholastic News Advisor 2019-present

Tucson Values Teachers/Raytheon Leaders in Education Nominee, Finalist, and Winner 2018 

Presenter and Committee member - Math Educators Appreciation Day - University of Arizona 2009-present

National Math Teacher of the Year Nomination - 2014, 2018

Bear Essential News Educator of the Month February 2012

Presented at NSTA - 2009

Presentation - AZTEA - Arizona Technology Conference 2006, 2007

Scholastic - teacher advisor for Scholastic 2004

Intel Master Teacher Award 2001

KGUN-9 Classroom Teacher Award 1993

Teacher of the Year ABCO  1993

Our Class in the News 

The 5 C's of Arizona


Our Parks

Leaders in Education

Project WET


Breaking Barriers with Jackie Robinson

Mannequin Challenge

Meeting a Hero

Kid's Nomination

Radio Interview