Today, October 5th, is World Teachers Day. It is a day to celebrate teachers and our profession, and to promote international standards for education.
And it is about celebrating teachers that this post is about, and in particular celebrating a few teachers who, though they may not see this post, inspired me to challenge myself, made learning fun, and invariably inspired me to join a profession for which everyday brings new challenges, new opportunities, and new learning.
To Mr. Anderson, my Western Civilization 11 teacher at Terry Fox Secondary. You are the main reason that I, and I am sure others became a teacher. You made the whole experience of learning so enjoyable. There was never a dull moment in your class, and, in my recollection, you never had an 'off' day. You were passionate, knowledgeable, and personable. You got to know each of your students and treated us as equals, but were quick to put us in our place when we stepped out of line.
When I, as a grade eleven student, was struggling with what path to take following high school, you showed me what it was like to truly enjoy what you were doing everyday. After being in your class I knew what I wanted to do and I have never looked back. Thank you.
To Mr. Clish, my grade five teacher at Viscount Alexander Elementary School, thank you for challenging me. Admittedly I was a student that tried to get by on a minimum amount of effort so that I could focus on video games, lunchtime or after school sports etc. You recognized my potential. You were the first teacher that I can remember who told me that what I had done was not good enough. That I could do better.
I still have some great memories from being in your class, the science experiments, meal worms, and the science project using electricity that I built at home with my father. Not only did you recognize my potential you also allowed me to be creative in what I was doing. Yes, you did give me one of the only detentions that I remember getting in elementary school. And it was for something that wasn't even my fault! But you were certainly a great teacher, a fact that I am sure the many students of yours who followed me can attest to.
There are of course many others. Mr. Wapplington, who inspired a love of English Literature. Mr. Kiloh, my History, and Geography 12 teacher. Mr. Shong, who's Friday runs to the dike in Port Coquitlam I dreaded at the time, but now, older and hopefully wiser, I now very much appreciate.
Thank you to all of you. As Sir Isaac Newton stated "If I have seen further it is only by standing on the shoulders of giants." Truly, for me, as a young student, you were giants. You inspired and challenged me, helping to make me the person I am today. I hope I can follow in your footsteps, stand on your shoulders, and inspire others.