My sixth grade teacher didn't make much of an impression on me. In fact, I had to really rack my brain to remember him at all.
I'm losin' it with Mama Kat again this Thursday and chose the prompt: "1.) Your sixth grade teacher." simply enough. Who was it??
For one thing, by the time I was in sixth grade, we were moving around, having different teachers for different subjects. So I tried to remember who my homeroom teacher was. I could easily remember my fifth grade homeroom teacher, so why not my sixth?
Then slowly, the image hiding in some recess of my brain emerged. Mr. Madrid. He taught sixth grade math and was the start to my sixth grade days.
I formed a very non-opinion of Mr. Madrid. His skin was dark, his black hair was mostly grey, his build was medium, his circles under his eyes were dark. I remember that he wore zippered dress boots. I've never been a fan of zippered dress boots. No offense to zippered dress boot wearing men, they're just not my thing.
The rumor was, as sixth grade kids must form rumors about their teachers, that he was an alcoholic. The dark circles under his eyes were clear evidence of it.
Looking back now, he was an okay teacher, just very unassuming and un-impression forming. But I did learn some math from him, and math was probably my favorite subject in sixth grade. He led us through our sixth grade math standards well enough, and I remember that he said "school" kind of funny. It was more like "skewel".
He was nice, not stern. Almost too nice, I'd say. Whereas other male teachers had a more authoritative classroom presence, Mr. Madrid preferred to avoid confrontation. I imagined him just wanting to get through the day's lesson so as to clock out and return to his bottle, if rumors were to be taken seriously.
On Monday, I begin fall semester classes - first steps toward my secondary math teaching license. I have a calculus class, a "Step 1 field based Approaches to Teaching" (elementary school student teaching) and "Step 2 field based Approaches to Teaching" (middle school student teaching).
It seems like once I made the decision to "go get that dang license already!", and once I got accepted into the program, I've just been waiting waiting waiting to get going. The program is specifically for licensing math and science teachers. I chose math because (a) I had already met most of the prerequisites and (b) when I lurk the school job openings, math teachers are the most in demand.
If everything were equal, I would've chosen science, and my goal is to eventually get that license too.
Throughout this process, I've remembered teachers who've made positive impressions on me. Some are teachers I had in school, some are teachers I've worked with.
Then there are the Mr. Madrids. It's good to remember him too. So that if a student of mine gets a future writing prompt about me, she's not all "who the hell was it?"
Update: As I strain to remember, I realized that Mr. Madrid was, in fact, my 7th grade homeroom teacher. For the life of me, I have no recollection of the 6th grade void.