My Educator

March 1, 2012
The history of the United States. Boring, right? Wrong.
It’s early September 2009, and I walk into Mr. Herriot’s room not knowing what to expect. At first, I was nervous. I was the different one in the class. HOW? I didn’t talk to many people. But Mr. Herriot taught me how to not be afraid to be myself.
During my sophomore year, I knew I could count on him if I ever need someone to talk to. He showed me how to truly trust a teacher. And having a trust like that? It’s awesome. It made me look forward to going to school.

It’s early September 2010. I get my schedule from the guidance office and an immediate smile comes to my face—first hour: Mr. Herriot, American Problems.
That class taught me a lot about America’s recent history. Mr. Herriot made it easy for us to do well. He didn’t make the classes he taught easy, by any means, but he made it easy for us to get help. Every time we’d have a test, you could come in the morning and study with him—or you could come in during any of his prep hours and he’d be there to help you. He would drop everything he was doing to make sure each student would succeed.

It’s now my senior year, and I have Mr. Herriot again—for Psychology this time. And this has been by far my favorite class I’ve ever taken. By now, Mr. Herriot knows more about me than most teachers do. He knows my family life, and he knows about monumental events in my life. He understands me in ways most teachers couldn’t.
During the middle of the semester, I got sick and couldn’t come to school, missing one of the biggest tests of that class. I was on my way to take a midterm when a friend of mine thought it would be funny to kick my cell phone out of my hands and into my face. Needless to say, I was not happy. I walked into the library to meet Mr. Herriot to take the test, fuming. I went to rub my eye. Then, I took a look at my hand . Blood. Everywhere, there was blood. Okay, so now I’m raging, and Mr. Herriot is well-aware. He took me down to the nurse and he made sure I was okay; he tried to get me to think of other things to get my mind off of my anger. After that day, I knew I could trust him with anything. He saw me livid, frustrated, with my temper raging. Yet he didn’t get upset about my language, he allowed me to let it all out.
Being a teacher isn’t just about teaching academic lessons in the classroom. Being a teacher is about connecting with the kids. Being a teacher is about relating to them, and being able to get along with them and understanding their perceptions of life. These are the most important qualities of a teacher. And Mr. Herriot goes above and beyond all of that.





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