Category Archives: profile

‘Dissecting the Material’: Students describe Berrier as ‘hands-on’, creator of ‘fun’

By: Alex Smith/Staff Writer

Photo Caption: Mrs. Heather Berrier, biology teacher, teaches her Anatomy class about the tongue. Photo Credit: Alex Smith/Staff Writer


Mrs. Heather Berrier, who has been teaching science classes at GC for 5 years, talked about what makes teaching science worth it. She said, “Every job can be stressful if you let it. That is why it is important to find things outside of your career that you enjoy and take a break. I have had several other jobs before coming to teaching and this job is by far the most rewarding. Working with you guys and guiding you in your science education is a career like none other.” 

Berrier mentioned her favorite part of being a science teacher. She said, “I absolutely love watching students learn, and with that, it is the growth I see from getting a new topic failing with some concepts, but then learning from that. Also when I have students say ‘Wow that’s so cool!’ When it’s looking at a hydra or when they understand exactly how oxygen is used in the body.” (A hydra is a genus of invertebrate freshwater animals.)

Samantha Torres, 12, discussed what her favorite thing about Anatomy with Berrier is. She said, “The atmosphere! She always makes class a fun place to be. Not only does she incorporate labs but we also do a lot of group work, which I appreciate.”

Laney Elliott, 10, talked about her favorite aspect about Human Body Systems (HBS) with Berrier. She said, “My favorite thing about Science with Mrs. Berrier is that she always knows how to keep it fun and she tells us stories of things that have happened to her and people she knows that relate to what we are learning.”

Berrier mentioned how she has handled teaching Biology II, Human Body Systems, and Anatomy during a pandemic. She said, “ ‘If you don’t bend like a willow you will break in the wind’. This is a saying I heard my entire life from my Great Aunt Bunny. And it was so true with the pandemic. I learned so much about how to teach with technology, google meets, Nearpods, video recordings, Flipgrids, things I have never used in the past but now I don’t know how I did without them.”

Elliott talked about what Berrier does to help her learn. She said, “Mrs. Berrier is very good at making lessons hands-on and working with us to make sure we understand the material.” Torres also discussed what Berrier does to help her learn. She said, “Mrs. Berrier is always a helping hand. She often reaches out to students individually when they need help. Berrier is very approachable when you have a question, or difficulty understanding a topic.”

Torres further commented on Berrier, “I have had science class with Mrs. Berrier almost every year of high school. On the first day of my freshman year I had Bio 2 with her fourth period. I was able to go the entire day under the radar…until her class. She broke me out of my shell. She was introducing herself and her family when I saw a familiar face on her ‘Welcome’ slideshow. I had Mr. Berrier for fourth grade English. In front of the whole class she said ‘Miss Torres I’ve heard a lot about you!’ It was helpful having a teacher that welcomed me so early in my high school career.” 

Elliott also had a memorable story: “While we were in first semester we were doing an eye dissection lab and it was always so funny because when it comes to different things that we dissect, Berrier is not afraid to stick her hand into whatever it is we are dissecting, and when we were doing the eye she just took part of it and turned it inside out.”

Berrier discussed the most memorable moment in her teaching career. She said, “The first time I received a thank you card from a previous student, it was an unprovoked thank you card (not on Teacher Appreciation Week) and it caught me off guard. They were thanking me for teaching and telling me I had made such a positive impact on their life when they were in my class. Sometimes you don’t really know the impact you have, and at that moment I was like ‘Wow’.”

Additionally, funny moments happen, too. “Working in the Science department you have to have a sense of humor, we laugh all the time,” Berrier said. “But to me in class it was actually last week. A student told me, ‘Mrs. Berrier I am worried about you’ and when I asked why he said ‘You repeated two jokes twice in class….that’s why we didn’t laugh the second time.’ I immediately started laughing and told him he needed to tell me when I had a grandma moment! Teaching the same class sometimes I know I will repeat myself but him calling me out on it was so funny!”

Elliott talked about what Berrier does to make HBS fun. She said, “Mrs. Berrier tells us stories and lets us do labs to better understand what we are learning.” As for Anatomy, Torres said, “Mrs. Berrier’s attitude makes science class fun! Every other day I’m in class, she walks in the room with a smile on her face. It is contagious.”

Torres mentioned what Berrier has taught her about in Anatomy this year. She said, “This year we have had depth in everything from directional terms, root words/prefixes/suffixes, to the respiratory system and even blood!” Elliott talked about what knowledge she has gained from Berrier in HBS. She said, “We have learned a lot of things this year including the urinary system, joints, and different parts of the kidney and nephron.”

Berrier discussed her favorite lesson or activity to do with the kids. She said, “I love anything with microscopes. Especially in Bio 2 we get to look at living specimens. It is not something you usually get to experience. Looking at the diagrams is learning the structures but when you get to see them moving in real life, not just a video, it is a whole different experience!”

Elliott talked about what her least favorite thing about HBS with Berrier is. She said, “I honestly don’t have a least favorite thing about class with Mrs. Berrier. She is always so fun and personable.” As for Anatomy, Torres said, “Dissections are not my favorite thing to do in science class. Berrier does let us work [with] partners though, which is nice because most times I take notes while my partner does the actual dissection. Although they are interesting to look at, the smell is too much for me!” For her part, Berrier discussed her least favorite thing about being a Science teacher. She said, “I really cannot find anything. I go to work every single day loving what I do!”

Berrier discussed how she balances her work and home life. She said, “When I leave school I turn on the mom mode. I try not to look at my email or grade assignments when I am with my family. It is very important in life to not always be working. If I have to catch up on some grading I will do this after my kiddos go to bed.” She also mentioned what she does outside of teaching Science. She said, “I am a coach of soccer and volleyball with my town’s rec league. I have been coaching for about 10 years. And I have Zumba twice a week!”

Berrier talked about what she wants students to learn in Science class. She said, “That failing is NOT failure. Experiments go wrong…all…the…time. If the scientist said, ‘Well that didn’t work…moving on,’ we would not have the medications or technology we have today. Learn in life from the mistakes you made, do not let them define you.” She also mentioned how she keeps the kids engaged. She said, “I really like group and partner work where they can talk through ideas and assignments. I also tell stories…a lot. I like to try and relate subjects that we learn in class to things that have happened, maybe not to me….but I know a lot of people with interesting lives!”

Torres talked about what she will remember the most about Berrier after she graduates this year. She said, “After I graduate I will remember Mrs. Berrier as one of the first teachers to introduce me to my future career. I plan on attending Indiana University majoring in Human Biology. Her class and attitude really inspired me to look into career paths in the science field. I plan to be a dental hygienist.” Elliott commented on what she is going to remember the most about Berrier. She said, “I will always remember that at the beginning of the year I was new and Berrier just welcomed me with open arms and made sure that I was comfortable and understanding what I was doing.”

Berrier concluded by commenting on what she wants kids to remember about her. She said, “I hope they remember that you can have fun in everything you do. I know Science is not everyone’s cup of tea, but I hope they enjoyed the time in my class.”

National Women’s Month Profile: Albion Fellows Bacon

Photo caption: Albion Fellows Bacon is referred to as Indiana’s Municipal Housekeeper.

By Jeremiah Edwards

The Progressive Era, from the 1890s to the 1920s, was an era of intense social and political reform aimed at making progress towards a better society. During this era issues such as labor rights, women’s suffrage, economic reform, environmental protections, public housing reform, and the welfare of the poor were all addressed. Indiana had its own reformer, someone who wanted to better the spaces people lived in, a woman who would become Indiana’s Municipal Housekeeper: Albion Fellows Bacon.

Bacon was an American reformer and writer. She’s largely remembered for her efforts to improve public housing standards. Bacon was very involved in tenement reform and was vital in the passage of legislation to improve housing conditions in Indiana in 1909, 1913, and 1917. 

 Bacon was born on April 8, 1865, in Evansville Indiana. She was the youngest daughter of Reverend Albion Fellows and Mary Fellows and a younger sister to writer Annie Fellows Johnston. 

After the passing of Bacon’s father a few weeks before her birth, Albion’s mother Mary returned to her hometown of McCutchanville, Indiana. Bacon would attribute her early life in a small, rural town as her motivation for her efforts to achieve urban reform. 

Bacon would go on to graduate from Evansville High School in 1883, she would then work for her sister, Annie Fellows Johnston, who would become a professional writer, as her secretary during her tour in Europe. 

On October 11, 1888, Bacon would marry Hillary Bacon, the owner of Woolworth’s shop in Evansville. The couple would have four children together. 

At the turn of the century, Bacon would become very concerned about the effects of industrialization and urbanization. Her main interest was improving living conditions in Evansville. Bacon then became active in her community; she volunteered as a “friendly visitor” for local charities. She helped organize a Flower Mission group, which donated and distributed flowers to poor working girls.  She formed an Anti-Tuberculosis League that would help with preventing the development of tuberculosis, and also a Working Girls’ Association, that helped young women that were working in factories and mills. The association would later affiliate itself with the YWCA (Young Women’s Christian Association) in Evansville. Bacon was also a part of the Monday Night Club, a group of influential individuals interested in charitable work, her focus being its housing committee. 

Bacon showed her dedication and determination to achieve her goals by attending every session of the Indiana General Assembly from 1909 and 1917 due to her agreement with the Indianapolis Commercial Club. The Indianapolis Commercial Club would sponsor her legislation if she attended sessions of the Indiana General Assembly. During her time attending these assemblies, Bacon would garnish support for her legislation from other groups.

Even after achieving her primary goal of establishing a state-wide  law, Bacon would continue working as a social welfare activist. In 1917 she became chair of the Child Welfare Committee, a part of the Women’s Section of the Indiana State Council of Defense. She would then work on the passage of school attendance laws and establish a juvenile probation system.

An organization was named in her honor, Albion Fellows Bacon Center, located in Evansville. The organization currently provides such things as residential and non-residential services, community outreach, primary abuse prevention, sexual assault help, legal advocacy, as well as children’s and crisis response programs.

Bacon would die of heart failure on December 10, 1933, at her home in Evansville. She is praised as a symbol of the housing reform movement and Evansville’s best known and most loved woman. 

Sources:

https://www.britannica.com/biography/Albion-Fellows-Bacon

Profile: Students describe Voelz as “patient,” creator of “great conversations”

By: Alex Smith/Staff Writer

Photo Caption: Mrs. Krysha Voelz, English and Film Literature teacher, helps Chelsea Adair, 9, with her assignment in English 9. Photo Credit: Alex Smith/Staff Writer

Mrs. Krysha Voelz, English and Film Literature teacher, has recently been voted Teacher of the Year for GCHS by her peers. Voelz, who has been teaching English for 8 years at GC, talked about what makes teaching worth all the stress, all the grading, planning, and overall time involved. She said, “It is worth it whenever I see a student feel accomplished and proud of his/her efforts.” 

Voelz mentioned several positive aspects of being an English teacher. She said, “I enjoy multiple aspects of it. I really enjoy forming relationships with teens and watching them mature socially, intellectually, and emotionally throughout high school. I also LOVE analyzing literature with students who discover new meaning and have those ‘Aha moments’!” 

Katlyn Garner, 11, discussed what her favorite thing about Film Literature with Voelz is. She said, “She is a good teacher; she’s really friendly. She really likes to talk about films and it’s nice to talk to her about that sort of stuff.” 

McKenzie Bell, 9, talked about her favorite aspect of English with Voelz. She said, “My favorite thing about Mrs. Voelz is how caring she is about her students’ education and our feelings. She also makes eye contact [with us] when explaining things which shows she’s genuinely communicating.”

Voelz mentioned how she has handled teaching English, Film Literature, and F111, a college composition class, during a pandemic. She said, “It has been extremely challenging. I have had to let some things go and allow myself the same ‘grace’ I give to others. On the flip side, I have discovered new teaching strategies and have added [them] to my ‘wheelhouse.’ “

Bell talked about what Voelz does to help her learn. She said, “Something she does to help me learn is check in occasionally to make sure I’m on track.” Garner discussed what Voelz does to help her learn. She said, “She’s very patient, she’s great at explaining things and creates good conversations.”

Voelz talked about what teachers or mentors that she follows on social media and why. She said, “I chuckle at this question because I am not one for using social media much. However, I do follow one English teacher, Laura Randazzo, on YouTube and Teachers Pay Teachers. She is a high school English teacher about my age who creates fabulous lessons for her students. She also makes some entertaining videos. She is my idol!” She also mentioned who the most influential teacher in her life was and why. She said, “The teacher who impacted me the most was my high school English teacher, Mrs. Barbara Taylor. She was my teacher during my freshman year as well as my senior year. She was tough, funny, and inspired a love for the classics. I was first exposed to classics such as The Iliad and The Odyssey as well as works by Shakespeare in her room.”

Garner further commented on Voelz, “I’ve only had her for a short period of time but she’s just a really good teacher.” Bell told a memorable story about Voelz: “I was struggling with my grades and she noticed so she called me up and talked to me about it and offered to help me which no other teacher has done before.” Voelz discussed memorable moments in her teaching career. She said, “There are so many; however, I am always moved when I receive a card or an email from a student, years after I have had him/her in class, to thank me for making a difference in his/her life.”

Bell talked about what Voelz does to make English class fun. She said, “Something she does to make class fun is letting us work with friends.” As for Film Lit, Garner said, “Like I said, she’s very passionate about films and talking about films and there are good conversations.”

Voelz discussed how she balances her work and home life. She said, “This is tough, as I haven’t fully achieved this balance. It is a juggling act, for sure. Like most teachers, I take a lot home with me. This includes grading, planning, and responding to emails. I go through phases where I am more ‘balanced’ than others. Currently, my husband and I are making an effort to exercise together and get to sleep before 11:00. It always helps to achieve balance when you have someone who provides encouragement and accountability.” She also mentioned what she does outside of teaching English. She said, “I try to exercise regularly and enjoy working out in the gym and outside. I walk, jog, do yoga, and swim. In addition, I spend a lot of time with my family. I have one daughter who lives at home and three other adult children who live in Indiana, whom I see often.”

Garner mentioned what Voelz has taught her about in Film Literature this Semester. She said, “Right now we’re watching a film that’s about history, which is really cool. We’ve watched a lot of different types of films and different styles of films.” Bell talked about what Voelz has taught her about in English 9 this Semester. She said, “She’s taught us about the story Romeo and Juliet and Greek mythology, my personal favorites.” Voelz discussed her favorite lesson or activity to do with the kids. She said, “I really enjoy Socratic seminars. It is extremely uplifting to observe students lead and discuss issues they have independently noted in texts they read for class.”

Bell talked about what her least favorite thing about English with Voelz is. She said, “My least favorite thing is doing work on our own.” As for Film Lit, Garner said, “Most of the reading can be a little bit continuous and the notes can be a bit boring sometimes but there’s good conversations.” For her part, Voelz discussed her least favorite thing about being an English teacher. She said, “My least favorite part is the paperwork (email, etc.) I know it is important to communicate with others, but sometimes it seems to take over my life. Balancing email communication with grading, planning, and teaching is challenging.”

Voelz talked about what she wants students to learn in English class. She said, “My number one goal is for students to realize they are capable of achieving whatever they work to do.” She also mentioned how she keeps the kids engaged. She said, “I typically find that their engagement is related to my enthusiasm. If I enjoy what I am reading or discussing, I usually find that my engagement is contagious. I also think engagement rises as the students have more ownership in the lesson.”

Garner talked about what she is going to remember the most about Voelz. She said, “Probably just the classroom morale and how many movies we watched.” Bell commented on what she is going to remember the most about Voelz. She said, “Something I will remember most is how much she cared [about us] and she is really good at teaching.” Voelz concluded by commenting on what she wants kids to remember about her. She said, “I hope that they remember that I care and that most people in life are willing to help you when you show effort.”

Profile: Meredith Leads Boys Basketball to Success

By: Alex Smith/Staff Writer

Photo Caption: Head coach Luke Meredith and the boys basketball team cheer during the sectional semi-finals at Richmond HS on March 5, 2021 against Mt. Vernon. Photo Credit: John Kennedy

Under head coach Luke Meredith, the boys basketball team ended the 2020-2021 basketball season 14-10, which is the second highest win total since 2004. Meredith, who has been the  boys basketball head coach at GC for 3 years, talked about what makes coaching worth it. He said, “It is very stressful, but this is what I prayed for. This is what I always wanted to do with my life. It’s worth it when you see the growth/development of our players through the season, years, (and) journey of playing high school basketball. It’s never easy, but ALWAYS worth it. Everything you want is always on the other side of hard.”

Adam Lester, 12, co-captain of the team, discussed the positive aspects of being on a team for Coach Meredith. He said, “My favorite thing about playing for Coach Meredith is his passion for our team, and we can really see how bad he wants to win.”

As a head coach, building relationships is very important. Meredith said, “My favorite thing about being the boys basketball coach at GCHS is the relationship I have formed with my coaching staff (Johnson, Mullins, Bolden, Loudenburg) and more specifically the current/former players in the program. We spend a lot of time together and I feel a special bond with all current and former players through this journey of basketball. I care for them, we trust each other, and they play hard for our program, community, and school!”

 Owen Anderson, 11, has seen Meredith’s enthusiasm and spirit for the game on a daily basis. He said, “I love Coach’s energy and how badly he wants us to succeed day in and day out.” 

For his part, Meredith said what his most eventful moments in his coaching experience are. He said, “My most memorable moment in my coaching experience happens to be 3 favorite items: 1) Receiving the ‘call’ from athletic director Jared Manning when I was offered the job to come here from Avon HS to be the next MBB HC at GCHS. It was a career goal of mine to be a (head coach) in the state of Indiana and to achieve that goal was a great moment for me and my family, 2) When we defeated Mt. Vernon in January 2020 here at GC. The faces of our kids in the locker room is something that I’ll always remember. We worked so hard that year, were big underdogs, and they deserved that moment. Pure elation in the locker room,  & 3) Pre-game of New Palestine game at Richmond last year 2021- seeing the fans finally back in the stands and the GC Rage student BLACK OUT gave me chills.”

Both Lester and Anderson described this moment in the locker room as one of their most unforgettable moments in their basketball career as well.

Lester talked about what Coach Meredith does to make the sport enjoyable. He said, “He really likes to joke with us and have a good time, but when it’s time to play he’s the most well prepared and organized coach there is who instills full trust in his players.” Meredith discussed how he keeps the boys engaged and having fun. He said, “I keep the team engaged and bringing the juice by pre-practice talks, music during practice, competitions in most drills, and guest speakers. We always have fun, but work hard as well!!!” Anderson mentioned what Coach Meredith does to keep things light. He said, “Coach Meredith makes basketball fun just by telling jokes and making us laugh.”

Meredith has to carefully balance his home and coaching life. His family is invested in the sport as well, which helps. He said, “I balance home and coaching because our family loves basketball. Having my boys and wife in the stands on Friday nights watching us play is something we enjoy as a family. Both my boys love the game of basketball, play for our youth GC JUICE feeder system, and always pick their ‘favorite’ players every year to cheer for from the stands. My wife does an awesome job of being supportive of me and my dreams/goals to coach basketball. We all do it together; we moved to Greenfield 3 years ago and fell in love with the community, schools, and our TEAM.”

Anderson talked about some benefits of playing basketball. He said, “Some advantages of playing basketball are being able to be with a family every single day.” As for Lester’s thoughts, he said, “The experience and memories that come with it.”

Along with the highs, there can be obstacles along the way. Lester discussed some of those challenges. He said, “The biggest challenge of basketball is fitting in my school work into my schedule as well.” Anderson added, “The biggest challenge is definitely trying to be good enough to benefit your team all the time.”

Meredith mentioned what drills and strategies he plans on using to train the boys for this year’s season. He said, “The team loves one drill: MICHIGAN MONDAY.” MICHIGAN MONDAY is a 10:00 full court competition drill that they do on Mondays in practice. Meredith talked about how he prepares the boys physically and mentally when they are facing a challenging opponent. He said, “Doesn’t matter the opponent- we will do 3 things: JUICE (energy and effort); COMPETE (refuse to lose); STANDARD (play hard ALL the time-standard is the standard). Your practices ALWAYS snitch on you in games.  REPRESENT GREENFIELD.” He also talked about what he wants the boys to learn in basketball and what his number one goal is. He said, “The #1 GOAL: Represent our school, city, and basketball program the right way. Be the best person they can be, best student they can be, best basketball player they can be!!! (In that order)” 

Meredith’s inspiration for a lot of his beliefs and principles comes from someone very close to him. “My mom- Brenda Meredith- is the most influential person in my life because she is the toughest woman I know and (she) raised my sister and I with high expectations to respect teachers/school, work hard, and always try your best,” he said. 

About how he encourages confidence and team-building among the team, Meredith said, “Confidence comes from preparation. If you prepared for the moment, there is no need to become nervous. Prior planning prevents poor performance. You put in the work in the dark when no one else is watching, so you can shine when the lights are on and the popcorn is popping.” 

There is little doubt that the players have been inspired by that light. As for what he will remember from his time with Meredith, Anderson said, “I’m gonna remember that fire he brought to practice and to games everyday which is why we have been so successful. He pushes us to work harder every day.” 

Lester will graduate this year, which makes the memories bittersweet. He said, “I’ll remember most the fun he brought to every practice and workout and how his motivation only inspired me to work even harder.” 

As for Meredith, what he wants his players to take away with them is this: “I want my players to remember that I do care for them more than just on the basketball court- its more than 4 quarters. I’ve been to players’ weddings, graduations, (and) college basketball games, and will be able to continue our player/coach relationship well after their 4 years at GCHS. Once your coach, ALWAYS your coach- that’s what it’s all about.”

Inside the Beat: Wing leads marching band to success

By: Lauren Blasko/Staff Writer

Photo Caption: Mr. Chris Wing rehearses with Jazz Band 1, preparing for the jazz concert Wednesday, Dec. 1, 2021.

Greenfield Central earned the title of state champion for the second time in marching band competition. This was a huge success for the fine arts department because of the gap year from the 2019 state championship to the 2021 title for achievement. Many people believe that the students were the major reasons for the success, but so were their staff members.Their band director, Mr. Chris Wing, deserves a lot of the credit, although he will tell you otherwise.

Mr. Wing has been in the marching band world for 30 years now. From his years of experience, Mr. Wing is used to having the pressure of being the band director on his shoulders, but he is also a band teacher and a father of four at home. Through all of the years in the marching arts, Mr. Wing had known what the outline of a normal marching band season looked like, until the season of 2020. The competition season for marching band was cancelled. It was a upsetting thing for the students and staff of the marching band, but instead of doing nothing, Mr. Wing had the students and staff do a shorter and less time-consuming season. Mr. Wing, in 2021 now, said that the 2020 season helped them for the following year. There were many differences between the marching band season of 2020 and 2021. One of the major differences between the two seasons was the family atmosphere that is often created between the students and staff. Mr. Wing said, “One of the things that was impossible to replicate last year was the family atmosphere we (usually) develop. Because our time was limited and because there was no travel, we struggled to build that environment and had to recreate it this year.” Even with the setback by the 2020 season, with the new 2021 marching band season Mr. Wing believed he gave his students the necessary fundamental skills to be successful. 

Mr. Wing though isn’t all alone, though. He has multiple staff members who help each one of the sections in the band. Mr. Sean Widmer is the percussion director and has been working with Mr. Wing for 10 years now. Through that time, Wing has been Widmer’s band director and one of his great friends. Through all their conversations one of the major things Widmer has learned from Wing is, “How to react to a situation. Life deals us many hands, both good and bad. How you respond is what really matters.” Through the bad and good times, both Widmer and Wing, with the other following staff members, have been there for one another. Widmer said that Mr. Wing has had an extraordinary influence on him, and that he and Wing aren’t just staff members but are good friends that have had, “lots of laughs, lots of life advice, lots of hang in there’s. It’s been a joy.” 

Wing also has another staff member that has worked alongside him for a long time, Jeremy Turner. Turner, the performing arts secretary, is the main staff member for helping the wind players, mainly the woodwinds.Turner was actually part of the musical arts department a couple of weeks before Mr. Wing arrived at the school. Turner didn’t know what to expect when Mr. Wing was about to join this arts department. Turner stated, “I didn’t know if I would be here 10 years later, but it was a feeling-out process and now he is for real one of my best friends.” Through the years they have been together, they have had many heartbreaking moments but also really heartwarming ones too.  Turner said, “At the end of the run (performance for state finals 2019) it was emotional and my eyes got a little foggy, and at the end of the run I’m always the last one off the field to make sure there is nothing left.” Both Turner and Wing knew that the performance had touched both of their hearts. Turner said, “He  just smiled at me and I said “Stop man, stop man” (so that Turner wouldn’t get emotional) and he wrapped his arms around me as he does like a big bro.” Through the years together Turner and Wing have watched the Greenfield-Central Marching Band grow.

Through the difficult, emotional, and fun times of the marching band, sometimes it can be hard to get your students motivated to want to continue working hard after many months. Wing, and the other staff members, help their students continue working hard by giving them the motivation to help them. Wing enjoys being a part of the marching band program because he knows the reward of it. Wing said, “Knowing you contributed to the success of a team is an irreplaceable feeling. That’s the payoff.” That’s what drives Wing to push his students more every single day. He knows the reward, so he wants to let his students see it too, and sometimes that ends up with becoming a state champion. Wing has a major influence on his staff and students. That’s what makes his marching band so successful. 

Profile: Davenport details day in life of history teacher

by Alex Smith/Staff Writer

Photo Caption: Davenport helps a student with her assignment. Photo by Kensy Alfaro

Mrs. Kelsie Davenport, history teacher, who has been teaching U.S. History & U.S. Government for 11 years, talked about what it is like to be a history teacher. She said, “My favorite part of teaching Social Studies is helping students recognize the significance of history in shaping the present and applying practical government knowledge to their everyday life.” 

Dakota Herald, 12, discussed what his favorite thing about history with Davenport is. He said, “I love the way that she teaches because she’s really loud and all the lessons are well thought out.” Bryce Hasty, 11, also talked about his favorite part about the class. He said, “It is a class I enjoy. The notes are easy to do and (we have) very little school work.” 

Herald talked about his least favorite thing about the class. He said, “Coincidentally, the amount of notes. She gives out a lot of notes but it actually helps a lot.” Davenport discussed  her least favorite part of being a History teacher is. She said, “My least favorite part of teaching is grading. Feedback for students is so important, but grading can be monotonous for me.” Hasty also commented, “My least favorite thing about History with Mrs. Davenport is nothing.”

Herald discussed what Davenport does to help him learn. He said, “The amount of notes she gives. The amount of notes helps me learn because I write them all down so it’s a lot of information I get to study and to help me understand everything.” Hasty  said, “Mrs. Davenport gives us easy to understand notes and assignments.” 

Davenport talked about what she wants kids to learn about in History class and what her number one goal was. She said, “In U.S. History, my goal is always for students to understand context and how history has shaped our politics, our economy, and our culture. In Government, my goal is to equip students to understand how government works & use that knowledge to grow as citizens.”

Hasty mentioned what Davenport does to make History class fun. He said, “Mrs. Davenport has a very loud and fun personality.” Herald also talked about what makes the class fun. He said, “She’s really loud and she makes discussions fun and she just makes it easier to stay focused in the class.” 

Herald told a memorable story about Davenport. He said, “I would say whenever we tried to veto her when we had the bills.” Davenport talked about what the most memorable moment in her teaching experience is:  “Every year, graduation is a memorable moment. Watching students realize what they have accomplished and reflect on their time here at G-C is such a rewarding experience.”

Davenport discussed how she keeps the kids engaged. She said, “Real world connections, a sense of humor, and mutual respect go a long way in a Social Studies classroom.” 

Herald talked about what he will remember the most about Davenport after he graduates this year. He said, “Probably just the way she teaches. It helps me a lot.” Davenport commented on what she wants kids to remember about her: “I want kids to remember that I worked every day in their best interest, that I was part of a team rooting for their success.” Hasty discussed what he is going to remember the most about Davenport. He said, “I am going to remember the excitement from class.”

Davenport commented on who the most influential teacher in her life was and why. She said, “One of my high school English teachers was my most influential teacher. She focused on practical skills, had a great sense of humor, and expected us to meet high expectations.” She also talked about the teachers or mentors that she follows on social media. She said, “I always follow people on social media that have good energy & passion for what they do.”

Davenport discussed what her favorite lesson or activity to do with the kids is and why it is her favorite. She said, “In U.S. History, I love any time that we are interacting with primary sources that build analytical skills for students. In Government class, the game board project is my favorite way to have fun and demonstrate how much students have learned.” Herald talked about what Davenport has taught him about in U.S. Government this year. He said, “Basically everything. About senators, bills, candidates, all the districts and states. Everything basically.” Hasty also talked about what Davenport has taught him about in U.S. History this year: “Mrs. Davenport has taught me about everything from when America was founded up to the beginning of the first World War in U.S. History this year.”

Davenport commented on how she balances her work and home life. She said, “I try to have clear boundaries to make sure that I’m not extending my work day too often into my time at home.” Davenport also talked about what she does outside of teaching. She said, “My husband and I are almost always working on a renovation project. I also spend a lot of time with friends and family, particularly my seven nieces and nephews, going to see live music, and continuing my search for the best burger in Indianapolis.”

Profile: Berger-Harmon leaves strong impression on students

By Jeanna Brown/Staff Writer

Photo Caption: Mrs. Laura Berger-Harmon talks to students in Spell Bowl at a recent practice.

“A good teacher is like a candle- it consumes itself to light the way for others.”-Mustafa Kemal Ataturk.

Much like the candle, GC English teacher Mrs. Laura Berger-Harmon helps her students in any way possible.

Mrs. Berger-Harmon said the reason she wanted to become an English teacher was because of her love of reading. She wanted to share her passion with others and help students find pieces that they would enjoy as well. Mrs. Berger-Harmon also mentioned that she has been influenced to continue teaching because of her students. “My students are the reason I show up everyday and I want them to learn something about themselves and about literature over the course of the year. Luckily, my teaching has been influenced by what students could do utilizing devices and this definitely helped when COVID hit,” stated Mrs. Berger-Harmon.

Teaching during COVID can be a struggle. Mrs. Berger-Harmon stated, “I quickly digitized assignments and tried to find ways to make assignments easier to manipulate through different platforms. Finding ways to keep students engaged is what keeps me searching for new ways to implement ideas in my classroom.”

Lillie Pratt, a former student of Mrs. Berger-Harmon, said that Mrs. Berger-Harmon was a very good teacher. “She would always help me when I needed help. She would always have one on one meetings with her students to discuss what we were learning, or struggling with. I liked how she explained things when she taught.”

 Pratt continued, “Mrs. Berger-Harmon was very sweet, but sometimes she got off topic. She would always motivate me to do my best by telling me to do my best and making sure I turned in assignments. Mrs. Berger-Harmon is a great teacher, but if I could change one thing about her, it would be how much work she gave out. Sometimes she would give out a lot of work and that made me feel overwhelmed, and stressed.”

Destinee Roberts, senior, said that Mrs. Berger-Harmon was a great teacher. “She was always here to help me, even when I did not want to do my assignments. She always made sure I understood what was going on and if I didn’t she would go out of her way to help me until I did understand.”

Roberts also said, ” I would describe Mrs. Berger-Harmon as helpful. She would always get to her point quickly, yet efficiently. She would always give us time to do our assignments in class, but sometimes she would give us too much work that we would have to finish it at home.” Mrs. Berger-Harmon has made a good reputation for herself. Whenever students ask others about her, many compliment her. 

Mrs. Berger-Harmon has been teaching for 15 years. Berger-Harmon has taught at three different schools in different states. She started her career in IL, moved to FL, then moved back to IN. Mrs. Berger-Harmon is the co-sponsor for Student Council. She also coaches the Spell Bowl team. She has even choreographed for the musical the last three years.

Teaching can be very hard at times. When you first begin teaching it can be hard to get used to the teaching style. Mrs. Berger-Harmon has had to adjust to new schools and teaching styles three times because of several moves. It takes a strong individual to be able to do this. Mrs. Berger-Harmon leaves a great impression wherever she goes.

Profile: Students characterize MrS. SOKOLOwSKI as “Laid back,” “Dedicated”

By Joseph Phillips/Staff Writer

Photo Caption: Mrs. Kelly Sokolowski ‘s students work independently during class. Photo by Joseph Phillips

Zach Livingston, 10, describes Mrs. Kelly Sokolowski as, “(She) is a cool teacher and usually pretty laid back.” He also said, “Mrs.Sokolowski is always willing to help when we need it, answers questions when we ask, but I feel like we get too many projects in that class. I wish other teachers were like her.” 

  This is Mrs. Sokolowski’s 10th year of teaching and her second year of teaching at GC. Her first 8 years were in Vigo County and she teaches English/Language Arts. 

    Mr. Brent Oliver, GC English department head who has been working with Mrs. Sokolowski for two years, says when it comes to teaching, Sokolowsksi is dedicated and focused. “She works hard and gets things done, that’s for sure. She is really good at asking questions to check to be sure students really understand.” He describes her as a great co-worker. “Even though last year was challenging, she embraced that challenge very well.” 

  Sokolowski says what she thinks her greatest strengths and weaknesses are. “I think one of my strengths is being able to break down the material in a way that students can understand it. One of my weaknesses is procrastination. I tend to put off tasks that I don’t like to do, and sometimes I have to scramble to get things done.” 

  Sokolowski tells about her journey of teaching. “I had a completely different career before becoming a teacher. I started out in a teaching program when I first started college, but changed my mind after my first semester to focus on creative and technical writing. I worked in marketing designing materials for a biotech company for years. I thought about going back to get my teaching degree for a long time. I took time off work when I had my children. When I started helping my kids with their homework, I started to think about teaching again, so I went back to college and got my license.” 

  Sokolowski says her first day at GC as being stressful. “I was hired only a few days before the first day of school. I didn’t even know what classes I would be teaching until the night before school started, so the first day of school was stressful but exciting at the same time.” She then began to describe one of the craziest things she has seen while she’s been here. She describes a Tik Tok challenge where students steal or destroy school property. 

  Mrs. Sokolowski describes her average school day. “I usually arrive around 7:45 a.m. I use that quiet time to answer emails and get materials ready for the day. After the 8:30 bell, I am busy teaching English 10. I try to relax during lunch, but most days I am either using that time to answer emails, grade, or work on lesson plans. Depending on my schedule, some days I stay late after school to finish grading or planning for the next day. Often, I bring work home and work on it there.” She reads to take care of herself so she doesn’t burn out. She also plays video games. 

  She talks about the best and worst parts of teaching. “I love discussing literature with my students and getting their opinion on the stories we read. I love a good debate in class about theme or character motivations.” 

   On the other hand, she says, “The hardest part of teaching is keeping students engaged, especially with cell phones and iPads in the classroom. Technology can be a usual tool, but a big distraction in the classroom.” 

There were several things she wished she knew her first year of teaching. “I have several friends who were teachers, and they gave me lots of help/advice in my first year. Even with that advice, I did not realize the amount of time I would spend grading. I wish I knew that not every activity done in class needed to be graded. I could have saved myself a lot of time then.” 

She also gives great advice for people who want to teach. “I would tell them that the first few years are the most difficult. Teaching is a huge commitment, and it is not just a 9-5 job. There will be many times when you will take work home with you, but the most important thing you can do is to take time for yourself and your family.”

Profile: Mrs. Rosing’s teaching style described as “caring,” “personable”

By Lauren Blasko/Staff Writer

Caption: Mrs. Laken Rosing helps Kylie Huffman, 11, with her questions about the reading. Photo by Lauren Blasko

Greenfield Central High School has had many English teachers throughout the years. Many of them have worked there for a long time, like Mrs. Laken Rosing. Rosing has been teaching at Greenfield-Central for 8 years. 

Rosing said she knew exactly what she wanted to do when she applied for college. Rosing stated, “I knew at 17 years old what major I wanted to as I applied for colleges. I knew I always liked helping and working with people. I always found teaching appealing and loved working in the classroom.” Rosing said that she really likes teaching high school students because she thinks at this age teenagers need good influences and mentors to help them. Rosing stated that unlike last year, she feels like this year she has gotten to get to know her students. Because of the mask mandate last year, Rosing stated, “I feel like last year it took two or three times longer to get to know my students, partly because of the hybrid schedule and partly because of how people were on edge.” Although now GC is operating under a mask mandate, at the beginning of the year, there wasn’t a mask requirement. Rosing stated “Without having the masks I could see people’s facial expressions. It made engagement from students so much higher this year than last year.”

    Something that is new and different for Rosing this year is now she is teaching all juniors and additionally for the first part of year she had a student teacher in her classroom. At the beginning of the year Rosing said, “I didn’t know how to feel about having all juniors, but now I like it because I have gotten to know a lot of the junior class.” Along with the changes in switching to teaching all junior classes, Rosing found out a week before school started that she would have a student teacher, Mrs. Brianna Perry. Rosing stated how she and Mrs. Perry discussed what she needed to get done for her class, and under Rosing’s guidance Mrs. Perry did the exact same unit that Mrs. Rosing would have done.

Having Rosing as a mentor, Mrs Perry, the student teacher, stated that she learned a lot from her. Mrs. Perry, following that, stated how she really enjoyed the way Rosing cared for her students and how she brought her personality into the classroom. Mrs. Perry said, “I think the importance of caring for students inside and outside of the classroom, and love like Christ.” Mrs. Perry said how she enjoys the way that Mrs. Rosing grades because of how she does it out of effort and how much a student puts into the assignment, not just the grade they got. Mrs. Perry stated, “I think she is very personable and easy to talk to. She is not afraid to give feedback, but the way she approaches it is like a friend giving you advice.” Having a student teacher was really different for Rosing, but Mrs. Rosing ended up being a mentor and friend to Mrs. Perry, even with her short stay.

    Mrs. Rosing hasn’t had just an influence though on just student teachers, but also her students as well. Joshua Pierce, 11, stated, “I have enjoyed having Mrs. Rosing as a teacher over the years. She has more of a hands off approach that helps you learn but mostly grow.” Rosing helps her students grow in their English abilities. Pierce stated how his abilities grammatically have grown because Rosing doesn’t give him the answer right away; she lets him figure it out for himself to improve. Kammi Anderson, also 11, stated, “Rosing has always been a teacher that keeps my attention and validates my feelings. I feel like I’m treated like a person during conversation, and the beginning conversation is wonderful.” Anderson stated how her English abilities in writing and better wording have significantly improved with having Rosing as her teacher. Pierce stated, “She’s a dope teacher, and she would probably hate me for saying that in the newspaper.”

    Mrs. Rosing strives to have a great influence on her students, to be a mentor for everyone, and to have a positive attitude.

Profile: Amador creates environment of cultural acceptance

by Kaydence Ham/Staff Writer

Many people are well aware of the value of a teacher in their lives. For students, a teacher is the one who influences their character, habits, career, and education in life. They mold students and their futures accordingly in order to make them responsible citizens of the country. There are certain people whom one remembers throughout one’s life because that person genuinely cares. One such person may well be Mrs. Erika Amador. 

Mrs. Amador has one main goal for students who leave her class and it’s not that they will be fluent in Spanish. Cultural acceptance and knowledge are very important to Ms. Amador. “Yes, I want kids to know Spanish…but mainly if they have an open mind towards other people, groups, and cultures,” she said. “That’s a big success.” Her co-worker, Miss Sonja Jaggers agreed that World Language teachers try to make education relevant and that is part of the way Mrs. Amador relates to her students.

Amador understands that students and teachers of today have so many challenges they face. She feels that technology is the biggest challenge because it can be a huge distraction. Along with that is “all the expectations placed on students by other people,” she said. “Sometimes students feel like they have to have an A or B or else they’re failing and that’s not the case. C is average.” That is a lot of pressure to handle and it can be overwhelming for students. 

She does her best to overcome these challenges with students by communicating. “I’m very open with students and expect them to communicate openly with me as well,” Amador said. Miss Jaggers said part of the reason Mrs. Amador is such a good teacher is “relationships and trying to be positive during the challenging times.” 

Some of her students would agree that she is positive. “Mrs. Amador always had a great attitude and tries to put us in a good mood too,” Marissa Clapp, freshman, said.

Amador overcomes her own challenges by trying to find new techniques and ways to manage what she describes as her lack of time management skills and technology skills. Although Mrs. Amador recognizes her technology skills as a weakness, when interviewed, Miss Jaggers described her as, “Tech-savvy, fun, and family oriented.” Amador also recognizes that in our current COVID climate there are multiple challenges for teachers today and teachers need to, “push aside all the ‘junk’ and focus on the students and why you became a teacher to begin with.”

She would recommend if a student does want to ace any foreign language repetition is key but it’s also important to immerse yourself in that language.

Ms. Amador has busy days at G-C filled with back to back classes and lunch duty. She loves teaching and enjoys interacting with students and sharing her passion for Spanish. The students recognize her passion. “I actually don’t mind Spanish because she is really good at keeping us engaged and keeping us busy so time doesn’t pass so slowly in her class,” Clapp said.

She also loves that her students “always surprise me. For better or worse they always surprise me”.

Students will likely be walking the hallways of G-C a decade from now and see Mrs. Amador because she plans to stick around. “I like teaching. That’s why I’m here.” She has either been in school as a student or a teacher for 36 years and she sees many more years to come trying to instill a love of culture in students because to her “that’s a job well done.”