With Teacher Appreciation Week, WHS journalism students wanted to take the time to write about some of the teachers that have made an immense impact on them across their years. I hope you enjoy reading their words just as much as I did. --Mr. Martin
First and foremost, every teacher in Wethersfield High School is great in their own way. There are a couple of teachers that stood out to me the most during my four years in this school and they are Mr. Galivian, Mr. Sikora, Mr. Martin, and Mrs. Fitzgerald.
Mr. Gallivan, I want to thank you for putting up with my annoying behavior when you had me during my sophomore year. You are one of the most determined teachers I know that has the ability to put up with kids who slack and try their best to be annoying. Sadly, our time together was cut short due to covid but every day I spent in your class trying to be funny and not doing my work. I'm glad you pushed me to pass English class and I would go back in a heartbeat to have you as one of my teachers again.
Mr. Martin, I’ve known you for a little while now and I’m taking your class right now as we speak but you have impacted the way I want to strive for the better. You’re one of the four teachers that is always putting up with my attitude and you have the best comebacks and sarcasm of all time. But I really want to say thank you for taking the time to not get frustrated at every assignment I turn in late or when I don’t try. Instead of getting frustrated, you channel your somewhat frustration into helping me turn in my assignments, helping boost my motivation to get your classwork and other teacher’s work done, and lastly helping me have great motivation to graduate. You are a blessing to the staff and students of WHS and I will never forget the things you have taught me when I am done with High School.
Mr. Sikora Never in my four years of high school have I failed your class but you did inspire me for lots of things. We both know I’m a lazy kid and hate doing assignments but during your classes and assignments, I feel like I can have fun and be more like myself when I am in your classroom. I like how you aren’t judgy. I discovered my passion for construction when I took your construction class last year. Thanks to you I will be able to do what I love after high school without making a million decisions about what I want to do with my life. You showed me that even working hard and getting stuff done can be fun as long as you’re determined and passionate about what you want to do. Whoever has you next in the incoming years of high school will have fun with you. Stay cool.
Lastly, I want to say thank you to Mrs. Fitzgerald for always keeping me well organized. Whenever I would say I can’t do something because it’s late or it’s too late to pass the class you gave me the motivation to try and push myself past my limits so I could pass my classes. I like how you checked in on me every day whether it was for school or how I just was mentally and physically. You have been a lot of help in my path to success in passing class and school and for that, I will forever be grateful and thankful.
During my time at Wethersfield High, I have had at least one conversation with every teacher. I've built very close relationships with a bunch of these teachers too. So picking one and writing an article about them is impossible for me. I can't pick just one teacher. All of these teachers have shaped me. If you had told me at any time in my life before my sophomore year of high school, that I will be going to college as a physical education major to become a physical education teacher I would not believe you.
Before high school, I hated school. I never did my work, I never knew what was going on, I never listened but most importantly I never cared. I had zero motivation for school or my life in general. I had no structure, no direction, no help. At Least that's what it felt like. During the beginning of my freshman year, I was failing the majority of my classes and was struggling both inside and outside of school. I wasn't the person I wanted to be and I didn't have the motivation or structure to be better/be that person. I can't pick favorites, I love and appreciate each one of the teachers, students, and staff members that go to this amazing school. Being that I want to be a teacher myself I have pulled pieces and philosophies from everyone I have talked to build my own.
I am beyond thankful for everyone in our great community, the lessons I've learned from them, the memories I've shared with them, and most importantly the growth that I've gained from them. I really can't put into words how grateful I am but I attribute any and all of the success to the people around me. As I said, I'm beyond thankful to everyone here and I can't pick favorites. But one teacher I really want to say thanks to is Mrs. Blanzaco. Without Mrs. Blanzaco I never would have gained the motivation to succeed or find what makes me happy. Without her, I would still be failing and I have no idea where I would be. I just know it wouldn't be a very good place. For those who do not know Mrs. Blanzaco is a tutoring teacher at Wethersfield High. She goes above and beyond to help people. Not students… people. She builds genuine relationships with everyone she meets. You can tell she is not working here to get paid, she's here because she truly just wants to help people, and that is exactly what she does. Mrs. Blanzaco got me on the right path. There is no value in what I've gained from her. But thank you Mrs. Blanzaco. For turning a stubborn, immature, mess Into what I want to be, something greater than myself.
One of the most hard-working thoughtful teachers I have met here at WHS is Mr.Miller. I have just met Mr.Miller this year for Pre-Calc. He doesn't teach in any really crazy way, or he doesn't just crack jokes with students the whole class. He teaches the lessons, and makes some jokes here and there- but for the most part, it's pretty cut and dry.
The reason I want to write this appreciative letter for Mr.Miller is because of his heart. And what I mean by this is I think Mr.Miller has a really big heart. My class for Pre-calc is wild, and it would probably be an understatement. My class can be really rude sometimes, sometimes we don't pay attention (myself included), a lot of the people just don't really care. Now a lot of teachers can probably claim this as well because as students we can be all of those things.
But what really moves me about Mr.Miller is the fact that he continues to show up every single day with the same positive attitude and the same goal/drive to help us learn math. And yes, obviously, he has gotten mad at us a few times when we have pushed his limits- as any teacher should. But also the fact that on every single test, when those same students don't care about a single thing that Mr.Miller is teaching every other day with the same energy, he will always help them the best he can. This caught me by surprise the first couple times he did it. I would say to myself, "why is he helping these kids, they don't give him the time of day during regular classes." Now I wouldn't given it a second thought if he would just play it off and say something like "Well that's what we were learning about last class when you weren't paying attention." And I think that would have been completely fine because those kids didn't deserve it in my opinion. Why would Mr.Miller help them? Why? That's when I thought to myself, he does it because that's what teachers do.
The most inspiring person I’ve met while here at WHS has definitely been Mrs. Duggins. She has only been teaching me for a year but I have known her since my freshman year. She has taught me life lessons about our history because she wants us to learn about how we began and how many things have changed.Mrs.Duggins is one of those people that you see way more than a teacher, she is a mother figure and inspires me to want to do more in life.
She isn't just there to tell her students about WWI or WWII or The Civil Rights Movement, but she also connects herself with each of her students to make sure they’re okay in school and outside of school. She is bright and strong and cares so much about her students like they are her own children, and she wants everyone to graduate and do big things in the future. Mrs. Duggins loves her history class even though it might be challenging at times. Even though we as students might be challenging to deal with, seeing Mrs. Duggins' energy and her bright smile always brightens everyone's day.
My grades have always been great in her class because she makes it interesting and fun, even though it is in the morning. I saw Mrs. Duggins yesterday and she had a talk with me because I was in a messy situation with an old friend. And she told me that I'm not a bad student and to hear that I might get in trouble made her upset with me. So we had a sit-down talk and she made me realize that the situation was really not important and I shouldn’t be interested in it. She is a very strong black woman and mother and I aspire to have the same mindset as her. She is a great teacher and an awesome person. Thank you, Mrs.Duggins.
To continue reading our Teacher Appreciation Week posts, click the "read more" button!
Written, edited, and produced by Wethersfield High School students, covering all news and events.