Mary Livingston – Desert Hills Middle School
I have been meaning to submit a nomination for “Teacher Feature” for several months now! Every time I hear the “Teacher Feature” segment on the radio, I am reminded of how wonderful my past teacher is! I have known Mary Livingston (or “Miss L”) for over 25 years. She was my teacher in 1985 in Vernal when I was in Middle School. She taught English, Reading, and Utah History. I loved her class, and she is the main reason why I am able to spell and punctuate correctly. I also learned to love writing and to have neat penmanship from her. She’d have us do “free writes” in our notebooks about a certain topic, then return them to us with her fun, personalized comments added.
It is very evident in the way Miss L teaches, the way she prepares, and the creative ideas and methods she uses that she loves teaching and really wants her students to learn and succeed. One example that comes to mind is a few years ago before the Christmas break, she showed her students the movie “THE ULTIMATE GIFT.” She had them write about each of the twelve gifts and how they could implement them in their lives. She really enjoyed the experience and so did her students.
Miss L not only cares about the students’ academics, she cares about them as human beings. A few months ago, a student of hers committed suicide. This affected her deeply, and she still gets emotional when she talks about this student, as well as the friends he left behind. She truly cares for and worries about her students.
Another example of how caring she is: a student of hers loved reading and especially loved the Harry Potter series. This student’s home burned down, so her Harry Potter books were gone. I guess this student was very upset and mentioned what had happened to Miss L. As a surprise, Miss L used her own money to purchase a new set of Harry Potter books for this student. That’s the kind of person she is.
What is really amazing is that all these years later, she and I still keep in touch! We correspond through letters, email, text messages, and phone calls. She is the reason why I love to write (and receive) letters. She also introduced me to the Harry Potter and Twilight books and has really influenced my love of reading. I always liked to read, but now I enjoy it more than ever. Although she is 20 years older than me, she is a dear friend and we do lots of things together, such as movies, plays, concerts, etc.
I have had a handful of outstanding teachers during my school years, but I must say that Miss L is my most favorite: the one I learned the most from, the one who has influenced me the most, and who continues to do so all these years later! I wouldn’t be who I am today if it weren’t for her being my teacher so many years ago. She truly deserves this award, and I know there are thousands of other students and their parents who would agree with me.
I am now 37 years old, married with a child. I hope my son will have teachers as dedicated, professional, and caring as Mary Livingston. Thank you for your time and consideration.
Kellie B. Anderson
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