A Teacher, A Friend

February 14, 2013
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It was the first day of junior year…at a new high school. I was dreading this day ever since I found out I was moving. Trudging my feet—moving as slow and timid as possible—I walked into Mr. Herriot’s class.

I was immediately greeted with a friendly, “Hello! Welcome to US History. Pick any seat you’d like, I’ll be assigning you a seat in about five minutes.” I can remember looking around, feeling judged, wondering which seat I should take. I sat in the desk nearest to the door—but I was moved to the opposite side of the room by the windows.

“Hiiiiiii, my name is Taylor! Who are you?” is the first greeting I got from the girl sitting in front of me. I told her I was new to Arrowhead; and Mr. Herriot overheard me. Mr. Herriot then began class. He introduced me. He asked me questions. And he genuinely cared.

Mr. Herriot continued to care about my adjustments throughout the rest of the semester. He asked me daily how I was. He asked, “Are people being nice? How are your other classes?”

In class, he would use me as an example. As I previously lived in Europe, he found way to connect my life there to my life here. He also connected another place I lived, South Carolina, to here.

I can remember one day where my friend Taylor and I were the only two who would answer his questions. It didn’t feel like a class, it was more of a structured study hall—where the teacher directly helps a student or two.

Mr. Herriot was more than just a teacher—he was also a friend. And he was the first friend I had at Arrowhead.

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