Student Nomination Story

Taking on two AP classes my junior year, I was scared and worried about AP macroeconomics and AP psychology. When I walked into Mrs. Brown’s classroom the first day of school, I was hit with a hard realization. Standing on a pair of designer heels, wearing a trendy outfit, and her favorite lipstick on her lips, Mrs. Brown was the most welcoming teacher to new students in her classroom. I realized this class will be one of my most fun classes, thanks to Mrs. Brown. From the first time I had a conversation with her after a week of her class (me being too scared to talk in my first AP class), me and other classmates knew she was our "school mom." She knew our personalities and what activities we are in, and provided us with advice. When we were taking a test to see if we were more left or right brained (left being more analytical and methodical and right brain being more creative and athletic), she said “raise your hand if your right brained!” Me and a few others raised our hands. She looked right at me and said “well that doesn’t surprise me at all.” I considered myself more of a right brain and she knew a lot about me to say the same. From the time I’ve luckily got to spend with Mrs. Brown, I’ve learned a lot about her. One of my favorite things I’ve learned was that her favorite color was black. I’ve always thought it was interesting. I connect black to darkness, fear, authority, and mystery. But those definitions are the opposite of Mrs. Brown. She is so bubbly, fun, and relatable (and not at all the meaning of the color black). But it’s her favorite color, which left me with two semesters to answer the question: why is her favorite color black? When Mrs. Brown hits the class with the phrase “I need a volunteer”, I immediately raise my hand. Her demonstrations and examples for psychology stick in my mind and leaves me with a good understanding. She usually picks me because of my enthusiasm to know what fun demonstration will have us learn something new. I knew from the moment I volunteered for one particular thing, Mrs. Brown was my perfect teacher. She took out a squirt gun, and proceeded to shoot me with water. She started saying words out loud, and if there were words associated with a particular thing, she’d squirt me. A simple psychology demonstration, right? In her class, it’s not out of the ordinary.“You can go anywhere around the room.” I hid behind other students. After I squatted behind one of my friends to dodge the squirts, I hear her laugh out loud. It was such a sincere laugh, making me realize this is just as fun for her as it is for every student. She made me feel like I was just poking fun with a fellow classmate. After thinking I was safe because of her laughs, I come out of hiding and she belts me with a series of squirts. Mrs. Brown makes a hard class fun. As I said before, her demonstrations are extraordinary, and I can picture them when taking a test. They will stay in my mind when taking the AP exam as well, ensuring me with success. Who knew a squirt gun could be my one way ticket to a 5 on the exam? I’m currently in the middle of my second semester with Mrs. Brown, and I think i’m pretty close to my personal theory on why Mrs. Brown wears black. (It’s no Psychoanalysis theory by Freud, but…) while black is associated with darkness and all things bad, Mrs. Brown breaks that stereotype. Psychology is such a wondrous field that gets your thinking. Mrs. Brown got me thinking she is a perfect metaphor for a life lesson on never judge a book by its cover. One fun class period with Mrs. Brown and she’ll have you biting your tongue on anything you previously thought. Mrs. Brown IS psychology! Who knew a teacher could actually BE the course they’re teaching?! Mrs. Brown, thank you for opening my eyes to one of the most interesting fields of study. Thank you for truly caring about me as a student. Thank you for making a fun learning environment. I really appreciate all you do, thank you!

Lauren Quast

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