Some Unforgettable Highschool Teachers
There were a number of highschool teachers of mine who made their marks in my life because of their good style in teaching or because of some radical ideas that they shared with us.
But I have to say too that the eagerness of many of these teachers depended also on the reaction and participation of members of the class. That was circa 1986.
Mr. Jarder: After-School Sessions
We even formed a sort of an after-class group--we stayed a bit late after school just to spend an hour or two discussing about stuff like exobiology, evolution, and mythology with our Chemistry teacher / class adviser in third-year high school.
His name is Mr. Adrian Jarder, of Sta. Clara Parish School in Pasay City. He was the one who amalgamated my passion for Philosophy.
Mr. delos Santos: Biology Champion
Another Science teacher (Biology), Mr. delos Santos, always took us to field trips to the zoo, museums, laboratories, and even petshops. He really stirred my love for Biology (and for Science, for that matter). He was my trainer when I represented our school to various interschool Science competitions. I brought home the Biology Champion Award in second-year and in third-year high school, when I won for two consecutive years the Interschool Biology Quiz Bee hosted by Adamson University.
Miss Lugtu: Parallel Lines
Our Physics/Geometry teacher, Miss Lugtu made the subjects lovable for us by using everyday situations instead of by simply sticking to the examples provided in our books. We always had this class contest in which we earned extra points if we excelled, so we always looked forward to her classes. I would never forget how I engaged her in a debate about my concept that "parallel lines are parallel only in short distances." When I saw her more than a decade after highschool graduation, she was still disagreeable with my stance.
Mr. Marso: (BO)squared
There was a Math teacher who was very witty and I looked up to him in first-year high school, but there came a time when he started to pick on me and always asked me difficult questions. One time, in second-year (he was still our Math teacher), I failed to answer an equation he posted. He wrote on the board:
ALFIE IS BO2!
[Note: 2 is squared or a superscript.]
I quietly walked to the front and took a piece of chalk and wrote the following:
ALFIE IS BO2! = ALFIE IS BOO!
MR. Henry Marso is (BO)2!
He never forgave me for that. He made sure that I got stripped of being the school valedictorian by giving me an average of 78 in his class after the academic year.
I graduated no longer in the honor roll because of that mark. (Any student with a mark below 80 in any subject was ineligible for the honor roll.)
Fortunately, I still graduated in high school with an award...actually three awards.
Mr. Jarder leading the teachers committee decided to give me the Mercury Award in Science & Technology.
And, I got a Loyalty Award and "Best Lector." I used to be the regular lector during weekly church mass and other special religious occasions.
I learned afterwards the reason Mr. Marso started to pick on me. I found out that he was gay; and because I was unconsciously refusing his advances, by not being sipsip or close to him, he resented me for that.
The Last Leaf
Teachers should be really careful of what they have been leaving as legacies. Not all students forget or learn to ignore or laugh at their teachers' follies when they grow up. Teachers who left very good legacies deserve to be given recognition. Rotten teachers need to be called their attention so they don't continue their follies and become bad models for students who would become future teachers.