Kirkpatrick makes math fun
Math teachers are often one of the most influential and positive forces in a young student’s life. Educators provide guidance, support, as well as an education. One teacher who exemplifies all of these qualities in addition to fun, humor, and forgiveness is none other than Mr. Kirkpatrick, math teacher at Kesling Middle School. His teaching style has profoundly impacted years of students in many ways.
Kirkpatrick is currently in his 25th year of teaching. He knew he wanted to become a math educator when he observed his dad, who was also a school teacher, interact with students and was inspired to follow the same career path.
“My father was a teacher, and I saw how well he connected with his students. I wanted to do the same thing,” Kirkpatrick said.
Kirkpatrick’s favorite aspect of his job is being able to converse with students and have fun with them in the classroom. His former classroom at the old Boston Middle School was famous among students for the walls that were covered in cartoon characters hand painted by students.
Among his many treasured memories from his teaching career, his favorite is when he team taught seventh grade math with Mrs. Massengill at Boston. The pair incorporated fun activities, humor, and brain breaks into class every day to help motivate students and keep them engaged.
To anyone looking to become a math educator in their future, Kirkpatrick offers a piece of advice; he wants them to be prepared for the unexpected and be open minded about new possibilities in the profession.
“Teaching has really changed since I started. I didn’t realize how many other hats teachers have to wear, especially in these past few years. Be prepared for the unexpected,” Kirkpatrick said.
In his free time, Kirkpatrick enjoys spending time with his wife and five children, especially going on vacations with them. A fun fact about him is that he has been on ESPN two times, both of which when his daughter won the softball world series against Italy in 2013 and Montana in 2014. He was the first base coach. While Kirkpatrick looks back on his memories with prior students fondly, those previous students look back on their former math teacher with gratitude and positive memories. He made math class fun and excitable to be in and always pushed for students to work hard and be proud of themselves. Kirkpatrick truly is a one of a kind teacher.