What ‘Ignite passion and discovery in every student’ Means to Me
My US History teacher, Mr. Poskozim , taught me that history and education is about more than test scores, it is about learning. He armed me with a thirst to learn more, and this is something I try to bring to my students. The mission statement puts words to what made me love school and learning. I was fortunate to have a passion for learning about history, science, and literature, but some students do not share that breadth of interests. If we, as a district, can help every students discover their passion, we will make them love school and love learning.
A Teachable Moment
My most meaningful educational experience came during my first week at Lake Forest College. I read John Winthrop's "Puritan Dilemma" and had to write a paper about Winthrop's argument. I read the entire book, took part in a discussion, spent an evening drafting my essay, and proudly submitted the paper on time. The next week I received the paper back. On the cover was a big D-/F. As I read the note, I felt the walls of the classroom caving in, and I briefly contemplated other careers that I might be interested in pursuing - careers that did not require a college degree, of course. Then the professor spoke and informed the class that only two students earned a passing grade. I was furious. To rectify this grade, the professor allowed the class to correct the paper if we attended a "how to write a college paper" session. It was during this session I learned how to be a successful college student. The professor told us to read every book that we discuss in class twice -- this is something I did for the rest of my career at Lake Forest College. This allowed me to understand the text on a much deeper level and excel in writing. Needless to say, I received an A on the rewrite. This story illustrates two important life lessons that I learned early in my college career. First, that failure is a good thing, if you know how to properly respond to failure. Second, that nothing in life worth having comes easily. You have to work hard if you want to accomplish great feats. I owe so much of my success to Professor Steven Rosswurm and the values that he passed on to me early in my education career.