Mr. Wood

April 30, 2012
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As I walked into room number two at Skyline Middle School, I looked around to see the face of my 6’6” teacher, Mr. Wood. I had a long ways to look up from my 4’11” self. I was carrying my yearbook in my hand and handed it to him on an open page with a pen asking him to sign it. I was an eighth grader and was saying good bye to my seventh grade social studies teacher. At that moment I looked around the well set up room with perfectly perpendicular tables lined up like they were when I first walked into that room. It was probably the last time I was going to be in that room. I will never forget that life changing class.

The activities that we participated in throughout the school year made a difference to me. Mr. Wood had a very special way of getting the point across and there were so many activities and projects we did that I didn’t have a favorite. You would walk into that class and expect to enter a whole new world where there are no limits. The first time that he announced that we were all to complete a presentation, everyone’s jaw dropped with fear. Who wants to present in front of 30 other peers? But, he prepared us and everything went smoothly. His directions were clear and to the point.

Preparation. Preparation is a key term that I learned from Mr. Wood. It applies for your past, present, and future. And we use it everyday. On the first Friday of every month we had a current event due. We would choose an article and write about it. It was a pain, but I learned from those and they helped me with my writing skills and kept me up to date with the world. As much as I loved every day in that seventh grade social studies class, my favorite days were when we would just talk about current events. Or maybe something going on or once the question was by Mr. Wood: “Why is a teacher needed, you have a text book so what more do you need?”

I look up to Mr. Wood, literally! I am a foot and a half shorter than him and it is an even bigger difference when you are sitting in a chair and he is standing next to you. He explained to us that his wife is short and that he is used to seeing the top of peoples heads instead of their eyes when he looks straight forward. Mr. Wood has a son and a daughter and I remember him telling us cute stories of them, especially forgetting to wash and comb his daughters hair after swimming in the pool and her blonde hair was tinted greenish blue. Or his son riding his bicycle by himself for the first time. My sister was also in the same class but she was in the block before me. It was helpful being in the same class when it came to someone forgetting their text book in their locker or they are confused on a question. But as he was one of my favorite teachers she would say the opposite. She liked him but did not feel ecstatic over him being the teacher. Probably because of his giant size and that she was more on the quiet and kept to herself side. He pushed her in a good way to come out of her shell. Eventually she realized that when the year was almost over and I remember her saying “Mr. Wood is a really nice guy, I understand why he pushes me to excel now and he is my favorite teacher!”. All I could think was “And you are just realizing this now when the year is almost over?”

When I look back at who I wanted to choose to nominate for educator of the year, I wanted to pick a teacher that wasn’t just funny and that’s why everyone liked them. I wanted a teacher that made a difference, one that you look back on the times spent in that class and say wow. I can truly say that if any of my other teachers were replaced with a different teacher, it would be a different class but the same lessons. Mr. Wood was not one of those instructors and I would not want any other teacher. It was a life lesson and social studies class, all in one.

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