Adventures in Middle School: IS Teachers Were There, Too

Mina B., Staff Writer

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It may be hard to believe, but your teachers were once in middle school! Intermediate Insider staff writer Mina B. was able to talk to some IS teachers about when they were in 7-8 grade. She asked every teacher:

  1. Where did you live in 7-8 grade?
  2. Did you like middle school? Why or why not?
  3. What did you want your job to be in middle school?
  4. What were some of your hobbies when you were in middle school

Mr. Hanson

  1. During 7th and 8th grade, I lived in Washington, Iowa.
  2. Yes, I did like middle school (we called it junior high).  It was really good for me because seventh grade was when I finally found a perfect group of friends. We have been in touch with each other ever since.
  3. While I can’t remember what I wanted my job to be, I do know that I never thought I would be a teacher.
  4. It is funny you mention hobbies, because I realize I still have the same ones!  My hobbies then (and now) were/are reading, playing video games, Ultimate Frisbee, and listening to and performing music.

Ms. Gaw

1.I lived in Wildwood, Missouri, a suburb of St. Louis.

  1. I had wonderful friends in middle school that remain my friends to this day. More generally, though, I didn’t love middle school. I think there is a lot of social pressure in middle school to be like everyone else, and that didn’t work for me. The pressure to be like others was challenging for me. As I got older, I found that there was less social pressure to conform. That made things better for me.
  2. I wanted to be an astronomer. I saved up my money to buy a telescope and I read a lot of books about space. I also subscribed to Space magazine. 🙂
  3. I played cello and soccer! Those were big pieces of my life.

Ms. Stein

  1.  7th grade and the first part of 8th grade:   Midland, MI;  Remainder of 8th grade:  Omaha, NE
  2.  Loved MS in MI;  HATED MS in NE
  3.  Doctor or Centerfielder for the Pittsburgh Pirates
  4.  I played softball, volleyball, and basketball in school; I ran a lot independently;  I collected stamps;  I also loved to read.

Mrs. Parry

  1. I lived in Huntington, NY.
  2. I remember liking my teachers, completing mad minutes in math class and earning cookies and cakes, memorizing the Colonies and Presidents in US History class, and liking recess where we would build human pyramids with our friends. A part of Middle School I don’t miss one bit were the school dances where we danced awkwardly to slow songs like Crazy For You by Madonna and having really bad acne.
  3. I wanted either to be a professional tennis player or a veterinarian.
  4. During my Middle School years, I was on the Student Council, loved playing Atari video games (pong, adventure, space invaders) with my brothers, competed on lots of sports teams, completed my homework early so I could watch the New York Islander hockey team play on Tuesday/Thursday nights, and loved hanging out with my dog, Hugger.

Mr. Mathews

  1. I lived here in the DC area–mom lived in NW DC, and Dad in Cabin John, MD.
  2. I really loved it; had great friends and a wonderful set of teachers and projects that kept me engaged.
  3. Probably thought I was going to play for the Baltimore Orioles, but was beginning to think about becoming a marine biologist as a backup.

4.I loved playing baseball, collecting sports cards, talking on the phone, watching TV, and spending time playing outside with my neighbors.

Ms. Campasano Krul

  1. Pittston, PA
  2. I liked it a lot. My friends and I  were all really close.
  3. When I was in middle school, I was just learning to speak English well (Italian was my first language).  I wanted to be many things at that age… a nurse, a vet, a policewoman (too many Angie Dickinson Police Woman TV shows).  
  4. I was what you’d call a bit artsy. I danced in talent shows, performed in productions, was a cheerleader, loved to swim in the many lakes near my home, and would design fully furnished Barbie doll houses out of old boxes.  =)

Mr. Scharf

  1. Rockville, Maryland
  2. It was OK. There were plenty of great moments like when Gail Pinsky kicked me for breaking up with her, or something. Or when Preston Calhoun left the school after Winter Break and everyone said he died in an avalanche. I still don’t know if that was true or not. Or when my math teacher told us she was going on leave to have a baby and then I looked at her belly and just then noticed she had been obviously pregnant all year. No wonder I dropped a level in math, I clearly did not pay attention in that class. Or the time the strict English teacher called my mom and said that I was a “good time Charlie” which was totally not true! My mom still calls me that to this day sometimes. Or the time my social studies teacher took a whole two days to tell the “Philly Miller Story” which was some story about the time his college roommate got possessed and lifted a car with his bare hands. Also, 8th grade dance when the DJ announced “it’s 9pm on Friday night – you know what I should be doing…watching Miami Vice!!!” and then I had to slow dance awkwardly with Katie Derry who I had a crush on all year but never had the guts to tell. I think that gives you a good feel for it.
  3. I actually thought I would be a jet fighter pilot but I had zero idea what that actually entailed.
  4. I enjoyed really complicated board games like “Ambush!” or “Battles for the Ardennes” and play them mostly by myself. I also played soccer and baseball.

Mrs. Waller

  1. I lived in Florida and in California
  2. I liked 8th grade, but vowed for the rest of my life that I never wanted to do 7th grade again…we moved across the country, I had to make new friends, and I hated letting go of my carefree childhood.
  3. I wanted to be a thoracic surgeon.
  4. Horses, horses, horses, and music (instrumental and vocal)

Ms. Hollingsworth

  1. In middle school I lived in Mount Holly, New Jersey.
  2. I am ambivalent about middle school. It was stressful for me in a social sense- way too much boyfriend drama! I always did well academically. High school was a lot more fun after I found my home with the marching band geeks.
  3. I think I wanted to be a scientist or a therapist.
  4. My hobbies were singing, playing outside in the woods, karate, playing the drums, and drawing.

Sra. Page

  1. In Milwaukee, Wisconsin (although every other year I visited Colombia and Spain)
  2. Yes, it was fun and I had good friends.
  3. I knew that I wanted to be a teacher already!
  4. I liked cheerleading, volleyball and four square.

Mrs. Green

  1. Columbia, SC
  2. Middle school was especially difficult for me. I struggled with friendships and had several run-ins with bullies.
  3. A singer and performer.
  4. Dancing (tap, jazz, ballet, and modern), singing, acting, and performing in musicals and plays.

Dr. Rushing

  1. Culpeper, Virginia
  2. It was not my favorite…I had braces…I felt awkward…
  3. I saw the film All the President’s’ Men about the Watergate break in and decided to be a reporter.
  4. I watched way too much TV…I loved going to movies with friends…I liked to read and to write and went to writer’s camp in the summers

Ms. Wynn

​1. Shawnee, Kansas

  1. HATED 7th — I was a big, unattractive, smart, dorky kid, and I did well in school without effort, so I was pretty much ostracized that year. I met my (still!) best friend in 8th, so that was a much better year.
  2. I was going to be a lawyer, even if I had no idea what that might entail. It was the most “professional” occupation I could think of at age thirteen.
  3. ​Pretty much the same as today — I read voraciously.