We just posted our final two tokens of appreciation for STARs (35% DEN Store discount and the special DonorsChoose webinar for next week) and didn’t want to miss one more opportunity to celebrate and recognize our favorite teachers at the end of Teacher Appreciation Week. We obviously have thousands of “favorite” educators – we affectionately call them STARs. But the DEN team took some time to reflect on one teacher in particular who made a lasting impact in our lives. We’d love to hear about the teachers that made that impact on you. Just post a comment.
It goes without saying that the teacher who has made a tremendous impact on me is a sixth grade teacher in the Harrisburg City School District (HCSD). She was just recognized as the Teacher of the Year (Grades 4-6) for HCSD. She is also my wife :)
One of my favorite teachers was Mr. Martin, my 6th grade Language Arts teacher. He gave extra credit for reading books and passing a test on them. I finished that class with 197% and a reading habit that just won’t quit.
Mrs Onstott, my first grade teacher, was my very favorite. I still remember sitting at the back table with my little readers and learning phonics! But the true delight was when you were the “chosen” student to rub her back during the read aloud! Can you imagine that?!? Times have definitely changed!
Anthony “Tony” Amato, my 12th grade AP Biology teacher, encouraged me to study science in college. He’s never hesitated to stick his hands in the guts of an animal to engage his students.
Mr. Wright, who looked like Magnum PI, was my fifth grade gym teacher and used to take our class on outdoor adventures like zip wires and obstacle courses – and he used to drive us there in his Jeep – pretty cool trip for a kid in fifth grade!
Ms. Dilts, my 3rd grade teacher was just awesome. She would have popcorn parties for us after school if we volunteered to help out. It was a great way to avoid doing homework!
My fourth grade teacher, Mr. Tarantiles, was the teacher who inspired me to be a teacher. He was very hands on, taking risks with technology (Apple IIe baby!) and with innovative techniques that extended beyond the walls of the classroom. He turned kickball games into math lessons and the playground into a science lab. Most importantly, he connected with us on a personal level. The man could also play a mean game of H-O-R-S-E!
Mrs. Clark was a teacher at my Jr. High school, and she was my 9th grade Forensics team coach. She was so encouraging and supportive, and a great coach. I won the 9th Grade Extemporaneous Speaking competition for my district, and 2nd place at the regional level. I’ll never forget her, she had a tremendous positive effect on my life.
My favorite teacher was Jean Sanders, who taught 5th Grade at Martha Turner Reilly in Dallas, TX. She was the first teacher I had that challenged the typical teaching practices. We were required to give oral reports for every unit we studied and dress the part. On one occasion she took me around the building to have me show off my Doc Holiday cowboy walk that I had incorporated into my oral report on cowboys. It was in Mrs. Sanders’ class that I truly understood that learning could be enjoyable if approached from the right direction and that not everything to be learned came from a textbook. She was a truly amazing teacher and as I stayed in touch with her through the years I learned how truly amazing she was as a person.
Don’t forget to share a favorite teacher from your life by posting a comment to the blog.