- Written by Jeff Summers Jeff Summers
Looking back, my love for writing was nurtured by the teachers I had in school. What is most interesting is that the two teachers I had the most difficulty with were also the two who insisted I keep writing. In fifth grade Mrs. Benton had her hands full with me in her class.
I was a constant disruption mostly because I was bored out of my mind. Mrs. Benton and the principal had numerous conferences with my parents both on the phone and in person. They were recommending that I be moved out of Mrs. Benton’s class skipping a grade to sixth.
My parents and my grandfather were adamant that I not be moved. Looking back I understand what their concerns were but I wish they would have allowed that to happen since it may have been to my advantage to be a bit more challenged.
As a result poor Mrs. Benton was forced to deal with me a whole school year. To her credit, she found assignments to challenge me and presented them in a way that I did not feel like I was being punished with more work than the other students. Much of that extra work was in the form of creative writing assignments.
That work fascinated me and I felt at ease putting words to paper. I constantly kept a pad of paper with me and I jotted down notes or ideas that would later bloom into stories.
When I reached high school I was assigned to Mrs. Litzenberger’s class for English. She was a small German lady who took very little grief from anyone. As with Mrs. Benton, I attempted to push the envelope with Mrs. Litzenberger whenever I could.
I’ll never forget the day I went too far and she chased me around the classroom with a ruler. That may have been the day that I realized that I would do well running the hurdles in track.
Despite my behavior, Mrs. Litzenberger was very supportive and challenged me to continue writing adding depth to my characters and stories.
While my life has taken many different turns, I always seem to find time to sit down and write putting my thoughts on paper. In this section I’ve presented several avenues into myself as a writer.
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Hopefully you will find these entertaining or interesting. I’ll continue to remember the teachings of these two educators who made a difference in my life despite the difficulty I caused each of them.
If you would like to talk about writing or even if you want to hear more horror stories of things I did to wreck havoc on the educational system feel free to contact me. I always seem to have at least one story I can share.