Today is internationally recognized as Teacher Appreciation Day. There are a few teachers that stand out as having a huge impact on me that I wanted to specifically call out:
My fourth grade teacher, Ms. Doxey. She was a strict, no nonsense teacher, but exposed our class to a really broad curriculum: we learned about Leonardo Da Vinci, we wrote books of poetry, and did a lot with puppets. She taught us again in sixth grade. She created a Spanish class that we could sign up and attend after school. And she pounded and pounded on the importance of neat handwriting.
My 9th grade applied science teacher was Mr. Blatnick. Despite having a huge crush on one of the girls in class, and spending as much time as I could flirting with her, I got a lot out of his class. We spent one day putting everything we could think of into a container of liquid nitrogen, to see what would happen. For a science project, he let me irradiate part of a plant to see the effect of gamma rays. We cracked a glass using sound waves. We put sodium in water and saw it react. I never did get that Tracy girl to go out with me, so the class wasn't a total victory, it did ignite a passion for "what happens if I...?" exploration in life that I continue today.
My 11th grade English teacher was Mr. La Fleur. Awesome teacher. He threw books or chalk at students that fell asleep in class or mouthed off. He assigned us papers with college-level topics. Mine was "Spiritual Isolationism in the Spoon River Anthology." He then took time in the evenings to meet with us at the University of Utah library and taught us how to use the indexes and the stacks to find articles we could use for our thesis. Mr. La Fleur also taught an ACT prep class after school. I don't remember anything about the class, except that we ordered pizza one night, but I nailed the English section of the exam, so it must have been good.
Thanks to all of you for shaping my education. This is for you:
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