Mr. H’s Fascinating (And Short) Biography
Welcome to my ELA class! I am excited to be your teacher and having a productive school year with you. We’ll be starting in the book soon, but before that I wanted to tell you a little about myself.
I grew up in Edison, New Jersey, about an hour south of New York City. I had two older sisters who enjoyed tormenting me when they didn’t ignore me. Still, I was lucky. There was a big farm near my house and a lot of woods to explore. Now it’s all houses, but way back then it was like having a private park all to ourselves. I’m very grateful to my parents for providing me a safe and memorable childhood.
I was a lazy, procrastinating student, especially in 7th and 8th grades. My grades were junky. However, I did read. I read anything and everything, from cereal boxes to news magazines, constantly. I still do; I read before I put on my socks in the morning. From reading so much I learned to write. That’s the way I got through school, by reading and writing. I certainly didn’t get through on my algebra skills!
I was an art major at Stockton College in Pomona, NJ, in the beautiful South Jersey Pine Barrens. I wanted to be a famous photographer. It didn’t work out for me; I was okay but I wasn’t great, and I was a terrible businessman. I still love taking photos, though. My favorite subject? New Jersey! And, believe or not, I also enjoy writing.
After graduating from college I moved to Huntington Beach to surf. I’ve been surfing since 1967, and I rode a skateboard before that. I wanted to be a surfer since I was 11 years old. Surfing is a huge part of my life. I like to read about surfing, watch surfing movies, check out old boards, everything. I’ve been writing a surfing journal that’s now over 300 pages long. Why? It’s fun! No, I don’t ride big waves; I’m not that brave. And no, I’ve never seen a shark close to me in the surf. Surfing is the best.
I live with my wife Michelle. I met Michelle in college 40 years ago, and I’ve been married to her for 27 years. We live in a condo with our three cats. Michelle teaches first grade in Anaheim. I got interested in teaching through her. I think I’m good at explaining things, which is kind of what teaching is all about. I think teaching is a very honorable and important occupation.
I’m an easy teacher. If you try in my class you’re going to get through. Even more, you’ll be preparing yourself for your future. That’s what mature students do. If you don’t try I can’t help you win.
An education isn’t just about making money, although more educated people generally make more money. Understanding different ideas and cultures makes life BIGGER and MORE INTERESTING. I want all your lives to be big and interesting, thoughtful and fun.