Mr. Martinez

Hello My Name Is...

Mr. Martinez

I am cognizant of the fact (like it or not) that during the past two to three generations, with the advent of two working parents, single-parent families, and other disruptions in what was once considered "traditional family", the modern teachers' roles have progressively changed. More and more, today's teachers are required to act as surrogate parents of the students. This perspective is not intended to imply that teachers usurp the responsibilities of the students' parents, but rather for teachers to perform as an adjunct to the parent(s), in an instructive manner, and provide a more complete educational training and developmental program.

Teaching history through our novels is more than teaching about people, places, and events within a chronological context. History is a continuum of persons and personalities, global stages, and the theater of events that is played at various times with different actors, on different stages, with some modifications of script. What history teaches is the truthfulness of what one wise man once said, "Those who do not learn from history are bound to repeat it." As a teacher of history, I have an obligation to my students to explain and provide insight concerning the lessons that historical events provide. I am responsible for teaching my students in a manner that invites inquisitiveness, so they can discuss major events and periods of time which then allows them to discern why historical events had a positive and beneficial result to societies, as well as how negative events were caused and had consequences which were not beneficial. Thus, students learn more than names, places, and events; they learn causal factors and consequences (good or bad). History, in a simpler explanation, is analogous to teaching a young child why they suffered a painful event when they touched a hot stove, even after repeated admonitions of potential negative consequences. A teacher has the benefit of providing historical consequences resulting from decisions of individuals and/or societies, which also provides portents of future similar events.

English is also a subject that provides a tremendous potential for students in their future adult lives. It is not a subject of merely correct spelling, written punctuation, or appropriate grammar. It is the vehicle by which we communicate, express ideas, describe emotions, and discuss positions in areas of agreement and disagreement. At its most rudimentary level, proper English provides students the ability to complete employment applications, write complete and understandable resumes, perform professional interviews and presentations, and provides a better opportunity for higher education and promotion in any career path. Again, my responsibility to my English students is to provide the highest level of communications capabilities, and present proper English in a manner that is fun and promotes the desire to learn a more expansive vocabulary.

Thank you,

David L. Martinez

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