May 27th, 2005


Friday five

Ganked from wcg....

1. Describe your education:

2.5-5 I started nursery school ("Sun and Fun" in Levittown, PA) when I was 2.5 years old. I stayed there through Kindergarten.
1st Grade: Manor Elementary School, Levittown, PA. I started out in the "dumb" class because they didn't know where to place me (as a transfer kid). Three class changes later I was in the "brainy" class and finishing 2nd grade readers.
2nd Grade: Hawthorne Park Elementary School, Willingboro, NJ. We'd moved, but the elementary school in our section of town wasn't yet built, so we were bused to the next section over. I had two teachers because the first one's husband got a job transfer. The second was this awful teacher who spoke "suthun." I got marked off for spelling "suster" S-U-S-T-E-R; had she said "sister" I'd have spelled it correctly.
3rd-6th Grades: Garfield Park Elementary School, Willingboro, NJ. I was one of 51 students in my 3rd grade class, yet I still feel that teacher, Mrs. Culkin, was one of the best I've ever had. She had just sent the last of her six kids off to school and was back teaching, loved it, and it showed. My first 4th grade teacher was great because she was into teaching me "hard knocks" lessons. The hardest thing Mrs. Witucke had to do was get my parents to realize that keeping me after school didn't mean I'd done anything wrong. Her husband got transferred away, and I got stuck with Mrs. Smith, who I hold responsible for the speech and some of the self-esteem problems I battle today. This lady chewed me out for giving a good book report because too many kids who couldn't read well enough tried to check the book out. Fifth grade was Mr. Schultz, who seemed biased against me from day one. I couldn't figure out why he singled me out to not get to hang with the other brainy kids and do fun stuff. Sixth grade was Mr. Lovitz, who was a psychology major who, upon finding out what you can (and can't) do with a BA in Psych, decided to get a teaching and use us as his "experimental subjects." (Ugh.)
7th and 8th Grades: Willingboro Memorial Jr HS. It was the biggest Jr High in the state with 2100 kids in grades 7-9. It was more like a prison camp. Nearly everything I was taught was covered again in HS, so it felt like I'd wasted two years of my life being tortured by fellow students.
9th-12th Grades: Moorestown Friends School. MFS was a breath of fresh air after WMJHS. I could learn without being beaten up. For the first time in my life I was challenged academically. The school had no discernible performing arts program, which sucked, but it had a computer and Mr. Hartman. Mr. Hartman was my math teacher three out of four years. He was an acquired taste, but once you acquired it you looked forward to his rapid-paced classes where you had to be on your toes. For those of us who were his best students he had special surprises.

College: Three years at Hofstra University majoring in Drama (1 semester), then Commmunication Arts (5 semesters) and minoring in Music Theory/Composition. One class at Manhattan College (Advertising), then two years at Columbia University, majoring in English, then Computer Science. A gap, then two quarters at Foothill College, earning an AA in Radio Broadcasting, followed by three years at San Jose State, earning a BA in Journalism.

2. What's the last class you attended?

Comedy College last Wednesday night.

3. Which do you think is more critical: classroom learning or real life experience?

I think a combination of them is equally critical. Some folks are "academically smart" but can't think their way out of a brown paper bag; others are "street smart" but can't handle certain kinds of problems that require academic theories.

4. What subject would you like to learn more about?

Playing percussion instruments, orchestration, humor.

5. Given the choice, would you sit in the front of a classroom or in the back?

The front, of course! I'm short and can't see well over most folks' heads.