Mr. Dave Carpenter – Mountain View High School
My name is Andrew Glover, and I am a senior at Mountain View High School in Orem, Utah. I am writing on behalf of Mr. Dave Carpenter, who teaches social studies at Mountain View. I strongly believe he is an excellent choice to become a recipient of your Teacher Feature Award.
I have had the privilege of taking several AP classes from Mr. Carpenter, including AP Government and Politics and AP U.S. History. Never before have any classes made me THINK so much about what I was doing and learning the way Mr. Carpenter’s classes do. He does not simply lecture on what happened in history to make you memorize the material; he teaches in a way to make you empathize with the people you learn about. For a variety of assignments for Mr. Carpenter’s class, I have had to do more than simply research historical characters such as Lindon B. Johnson or Andrew Jackson. I have had to BECOME these people, and debate issues in class as them. The unique teaching style that makes history into something interesting, funny, and relevant is one of the reasons his classes are some of the most sought after in the school. This emphasis on actually understanding rather than memorizing is one reason that Mr. Carpenter has AP pass rates ranging from 80-100% depending on the class and the year.
Beyond simply teaching social studies classes, Mr. Carpenter runs several social studies oriented clubs. The countless hours spent in preparation and performance for clubs such as Mock Trial and Model United Nations (MUN) nearly amount to a second job! Having captained both these teams for Mr. Carpenter, I have had the opportunity to work closely with him in preparation for competitions and conferences. It always amazes me how much effort he puts into helping high school kids understand world issues in MUN, or the intricacies of the legal system in Mock Trial. I finally have begun to understand it’s because he honestly wants his students to understand what’s going on in our world. He has prepared me to be an informed citizen who cares what’s going on in my country and my world more than any other teacher I have worked with.
Mr. Carpenter’s patience and fun loving nature in class and extracurriculars have won him the respect of thousands of students through the years. He is one of the only teachers I have honestly never heard yell at a student in frustration or anger. Reprimands from Mr. Carpenter generally consist of a few words that provoke laughter from the class; including the person being called out. We as students all recognize how fair he is, and because of the respect that he has earned from all of us, those few words are all that are necessary.
For these reasons, and for so many more, I believe Mr. Dave Carpenter is deserving of the KSL Teacher Feature Award. He has made a difference in my life in a way teachers seldom do, and I feel he should be recognized for all he does.
My name is Jessica Glover and I graduated from Mountain View High School in 2009 and I am currently a nursing student at Brigham Young University. I am writing this letter in recommendation of Mr. Dave Carpenter whom I think would be an exceptional candidate for your Teacher Feature Award.
Mr. Carpenter’s reputation far precedes him—I had heard many positive comments regarding his classes and teaching methods before I even began attending Mountain View. He comes highly recommended by countless students and he never fails to live up to his reputation. I was only able to take one class from him, AP U.S. History (APUSH), but I have had friends and siblings take his other classes and say they are all of the same caliber. I highly enjoyed my APUSH class, not necessarily due to the material I learned, but the way in which it was presented to me by Mr. Carpenter. Mr. Carpenter emphasizes understanding why something is important and doesn’t just require students to memorize meaningless dates and places. He puts numerous hours into preparation in order to give students an interactive and fun learning experience. To him, teaching is not a chore, it is something he loves and is obviously passionate about. Mr. Carpenter is also incredibly selfless; he has health issues that he could let distract and distress him, and yet he chooses to overcome them and continue to place his students first. He devotes his time not only to teaching but also runs several extracurricular clubs that are intensive growing experiences for students in terms of leadership and public speaking among other things.
I have seldom had the opportunity to interact with a teacher or professor, even on a collegiate level, that I have thoroughly enjoyed and admired as much as Mr. Dave Carpenter, and I hope that he can receive merited recognition through KSL Teacher Feature Award.
From 1999 to 2001 I was fortunate enough to take two of Mr. Carpenter’s classes, AP U.S. History and AP Government and Politics. Mr. Carpenter’s enthusiasm and passion for history, government and politics was contagious. Whether staging a mock civil court or taking a trip to the Utah State Capitol building to see the members of the Electoral College cast their presidential votes, Mr. Carpenter brought his subjects to life.
Mr. Carpenter taught with a sense of humor and always had a quote or anecdote for any situation. His vast knowledge was quickly apparent. He engaged students in actively learning and encouraged participation and discussion. He also helped students learn from missed questions on exams by giving back a percentage of the points to those who took the time to write down an explanation of why the question was missed. Students had to come in during their free time, lunch or after school, which was time Mr. Carpenter sacrificed to help students without complaint.
Mr. Carpenter taught history by connecting events and dates to frameworks. These notes were invaluable to me as a double major in college in history and political science; I had fellow history majors asking for copies of them! The depth and scope by which Mr. Carpenter covered his subjects was so advanced that my college classes were comparatively easy after completing Mr. Carpenter’s classes.
By far, Mr. Carpenter was the best teacher and my absolutely favorite teacher of all time. He challenged and inspired me. He taught the importance of the past and the value of being civically minded, lessons that last longer than the time spent in a classroom.
-Kristy Haight Peterson
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