Saying Tim Mohs has worn many educational hats would be historically accurate. However, for the past 20 years, he admits his favorite role at WHS has always been as history teacher.
“It’s just a great fit for me,” says Mohs. “I’m a natural-born story teller, and that helps me make learning history easier for the students. You can almost always find something in history that works or fits with any one student. And, when you find that common denominator they can identify with, you now have a student that is eager to participate in the classroom.
“I think the students are actually relieved to find out that history is not just about wars and old, dead guys,” he smiles.
Mohs hails from northeast Iowa and says the transition to Winterset 20 years ago was an easy one.
“It just felt like home right off the bat,” he says. “It’s been a busy lifestyle, but now that our three daughters are off to college, my wife Jacque and I are starting to enjoy a little slower pace of life here.”
As a 1984 graduate of the University of Dubuque, Mohs holds a major in U.S. history and a minor in world history, but he admits that it was the coaching endorsement that earned him a sometimes hectic, yet rewarding sidebar to his classroom teaching.
“I guess I’ve coached a little of everything over the years,” he laughs and ticks off a variety of sports including football, golf and basketball, to cross country track.
Who knows him better than his students?
According to Adam Purdy, “Mr. Mohs has a very fun teaching style and a lot of outside knowledge that he shares with the class. Along with learning from the book, he taught specific events and fun facts from history that he knows himself, and it helped make history more interesting and fun to learn.”
Addie Smith says, “Mr. Mohs is by far one of the best teachers I’ve ever had. He made a boring subject for me — history — actually exciting.
“I had his class every morning, and it was the only class I have ever looked forward to every day. He relates to his students in a way not many teachers can. He jokes around with them and has fun while still teaching. The only boring days that we had in his class were the ones where he was gone.
“Not only did I have Mr. Mohs as a teacher, I’ve had him as a cross-country coach for three years. I had done cross-country my eighth grade year, but I was going to quit my freshmen year. One of the best decisions I have ever made was staying in cross-country. I love the sport, and a big reason is the coaches. I had always gotten along with other teachers and coaches, but I never connected like I did with Mr. Mohs. During hard practices, he reminded us that we were getting better. After meets, he would tell me I did well, but I could do better. He pushed us without being too hard. He’s a great coach and teacher.”