Growing up, I was never truly fond of the social sciences. It was always about memorizing dates and names. I lacked (and still do) the skill of memorization of concepts; so therefore, I strongly disliked social studies. In ninth grade, however, I had a fantastic teacher who taught world history that changed my view on the subject.
Mrs.H was a very outspoken, excited, and passionate woman who loved history. She tackled hard subjects such as the different cultures and regions throughout the world and explored these topics with an open mind. But the main unit I will always remember were the lessons we had on Russia for the Cold War.
In my class, we had a peer that was from Ukraine and her mom offered to make Ukrainian/Russian food for a day and talk about their culture. I had never encountered such an exciting and wonderful period in junior high. I remember never wanting to leave my 9th grade honors social studies class because I got to try homemade Borscht (an Eastern European soup) and listen to stories of my peer’s family.
When a passionate teacher takes the lead in a classroom like Mrs. H, amazing things will begin to happen. For me, that great leadership resulted in finding the worth in those names and dates I used to underappreciate through listening to the stories of people’s pasts and experiences. My goal as a teacher is to bring the borsht to the table for my students as Mrs. H presented that opportunity to me.