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My Favorite High School Teachers

Paul is a retired American expat living in Thailand. Besides being an English teacher and translator, Paul likes languages and most sports.

One of My Favorite High School Teachers

My Speech Teacher and Junior Varsity Football Coach, Mr. Anderson

My Speech Teacher and Junior Varsity Football Coach, Mr. Anderson

My Favorite High School Teachers

I was fortunate to have many high school teachers who helped and inspired me both inside and outside of the classroom.

A beginning algebra teacher instilled a love for mathematics. During that same freshman year, a first-year Latin teacher kindled my interest in foreign languages.

When I was a sophomore, my speech and junior varsity football coach went out of his way to make it possible for me to play football by giving me rides home after practice.

During my junior and senior years, my chemistry and English teachers helped develop my interest in chemistry and forensic competition.

Finally, my varsity football coach showed me how paying attention to detail in practice, discipline, teamwork, hard work, and fair play were important both for success in football and in life.

The following were my favorite high school teachers.

Mr. Geiken

Mr. Lloyd Geiken was one of my favorite Burlington High School teachers. I was fortunate to have Mr. Geiken as a math teacher during my freshman, sophomore, and junior years.

During my freshman year, Mr. Geiken taught me beginning algebra. Along with my father, Mr. Geiken instilled a love for mathematics. Fortunate to be in a small class of 20-25 students, Mr. Geiken was an excellent teacher and gave a lot of individual help to his pupils. I remember having to write my homework assignment problems on the board and receiving good comments from my teacher. Whenever I scored a 100 on a test, Mr. Geiken would write "nicely done" on my paper. In the second semester, Mr. Geiken let me take a state math test that was given primarily to juniors and seniors. He complimented me for doing better on the test than some junior and senior math students.

As a sophomore, Mr. Geiken taught me plane geometry. His explanation of geometric theorems made geometry easier to understand.

Finally, as a junior, I had Mr. Geiken for one semester of advanced algebra and a semester of trigonometry. I recall Mr. Geiken teaching us how to use the slide rule. He had a big one attached to the ceiling of the classroom.

Outside of the classroom, I learned a lesson about politics during the election campaign of 1960. In response to my question of whom Mr. Geiken was voting for as President, my teacher replied that it would be the candidate who was the lesser of two evils.

Mr. Geiken would also watch me at football practice and suggest ways for me to become a better player.

Mr. Geiken with other teachers.

Mr. Geiken with other teachers.

Mrs. Faust

Mrs. Faust was my Latin I teacher when I was a freshman. She made Latin very interesting and kindled my interest in foreign languages.

I joined Mrs. Faust's foreign language club as a freshman and received an introduction to the different language families in the world. During the second semester, our club made a field trip on a Saturday to the Milwaukee Public Museum.

Mrs. Faust with other teachers.

Mrs. Faust with other teachers.

Mr. William Anderson

During my sophomore year, Mr. Anderson was my speech teacher. I enjoyed his class very much because it taught me the principles of public speaking and gave me confidence while making a speech.

Outside of the classroom, Mr. Anderson was my junior varsity football coach. Realizing that I did not have regular transportation home after practice, Mr. Anderson regularly went out of his way to give me rides home. On the football field, Coach Anderson groomed me as a left tackle and helped develop my blocking and tackling skills.

As a senior, Mr. Anderson also taught me American history.

Mr. Ed Connors

When I was a junior and senior, Mr. Connors was my chemistry and physics teacher respectively.

I especially enjoyed the chemistry class. Mr. Connors made it interesting and stimulated my love for chemistry that I later majored in while at college.

During my senior year, while I was studying physics, Mr. Connors took a classmate and me to a science fair in Chicago on one November Saturday.

Mr. Connors with other Burlington High teachers.

Mr. Connors with other Burlington High teachers.

Miss Jean MacCready

I will never forget my senior English teacher Miss Jean MacCready. Sitting in the front row of the classroom on the right, I always noticed a smile on Miss MacCready's face.

Miss MacCready livened our class's interest in literature by having us read from Shakespeare's plays and John Milton's Paradise Lost.

As a club advisor, Miss MacCready persuaded me to join the BDK drama club and also engage in forensic competition with other high schools.

Miss MacCready also ran a small bookstore in Burlington which I often visited.

Miss MacCready with other teachers

Miss MacCready with other teachers

Miss MacCready pictured with the BDK Club

Miss MacCready pictured with the BDK Club

Mr. Glenn Braunschweig

Finally, I will always remember my physical education teacher and varsity football coach Mr. Braunschweig.

When Coach Braunschweig saw me for the first time as a freshman, he told me that I was big and strong and should go out for football.

Following Coach's advice, I played on the junior varsity football team for part of my freshman and all of my sophomore year.

I made the varsity team as a junior and Coach put me in the starting offensive lineup as a left tackle. Coach liked my blocking and how I handled myself in practice against a much bigger opponent.

In April 1961 before the start of my senior year, Coach took me and three or four other teammates to a University of Wisconsin spring football game against alumni players. Before the game, we sat in on an offensive blocking clinic in the Wisconsin Badger's indoor practice facility.

Coach Braunschweig stressed attention to detail, hard work, practice, teamwork, and being held accountable. Benching me for one half of a game for missing assignments on defense made me a better player for the rest of the football season.

Coach Braunschweig with the 1961 varsity football team

Coach Braunschweig with the 1961 varsity football team

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2019 Paul Richard Kuehn

Comments

Paul Richard Kuehn (author) from Udorn City, Thailand on August 02, 2019:

Most of my teachers would be in their mid to late 80s if they are still living. Maybe one day one will read and comment on this article. I appreciate your comments, Mary!

Paul Richard Kuehn (author) from Udorn City, Thailand on August 02, 2019:

My academic and sports experiences were very good. I only regret not being more active socially.

Paul Richard Kuehn (author) from Udorn City, Thailand on August 02, 2019:

I was fortunate to attend a small high school and be in small classes. There were only 125 in my graduating class. Thank you for your comments!

Paul Richard Kuehn (author) from Udorn City, Thailand on August 02, 2019:

Your comments are all so very true. Thanks!

Mary Norton from Ontario, Canada on August 01, 2019:

I taught for many years, too, and I am always happy to read about students' appreciation of teachers. It is not an easy profession and it is not well paid either so this positive feedback makes the hard work worth it.

Pamela Oglesby from Sunny Florida on July 31, 2019:

It sounds like you had very good teachers. Your schedule sounds similar to mine, except for football of course. I liked English, math, and science, except for physics. It is nice to know you had good experiences in high school.

RoadMonkey on July 31, 2019:

It's great to remember so many teachers having such a positive impact on school and learning. I don't know whether teachers can do all that these days, with such big classes, so much paper work and so many other rules and administrative requirements that they have to follow.

Liz Westwood from UK on July 31, 2019:

Teachers have a big impact on their pupils. Most people remember many teachers for good and bad reasons for the rest of their lives. Some people's career path and decisions about future study are heavily influenced by the teachers they have come across. A good teacher can inspire and engage students. A poor teacher can put students off a subject.