Student Nomination Story

Throughout most of my schooling, there has always been one class that I enjoy. One subject that engages my attention and teaches me what I want to know. For me, that is social studies. History, sociology, or geography, I’ve enjoyed whatever class that I have, and there is one class that might just be my favorite. Mr. Skaros, my 10th grade US history teacher, earns this spot due to his compelling lectures, relatable anecdotes, and vast knowledge and love for the subject he teaches. When I went into my second semester US History classroom last year, it was unlike others. The layout spread students out in small groups with room to walk between and left an area at the front of the room open. As I would later find out, this would emulate Mr. Skaros’s style of teaching. He stands at the front of the room and paces around, forcing students to notice him. He makes it difficult to pay attention to anyone or anything else (in fact I can hear him right now in the class I’m writing this in across the hall). Instead of just teaching students, he talks to them. He transforms his class and lessons into a conversation and draws statements from members of the class. When I think back to that history class, one day comes back to mind. Towards the end of year, we spent a day talking about 9/11. I’ve known all of my life how catastrophic an event it was, but somehow, Mr. Skaros made me understand and imagine the scenario as I had never before. Lacking his typical vivaciousness, Mr. Skaros placed us in his shoes, as a high school student watching the world end. He walked us through his day and what he planned to do on September 11th and what he did after. He told us how the news was inescapable and no one processed the events the same way. It was like I was watching him, as a teenager, walk through fear and cynicism in the same way many of us do now. His retelling refreshed my view. Like someone who puts on glasses for the first time, I saw the situation clearly. I knew what it felt like to live at that time. I finally understood what happened to our country only a year before I was born. This is something that only a great history teacher can do. Mr. Skaros deserves to be recognized for his ability to connect with students. His love of history, personal anecdotes, and ability to make every class fun compelled me to know more. So, finally, thank you Mr. Skaros for giving me your stories, lessons, and class to help better my education and thank you for making history more fun than it’s ever been for me.

Andrew Eisenhauer

To see more exceptional teacher nominees, visit The Honor Roll.