8 new teachers at RHS

Moumita Milton, Staff Writer

September 22, 2017

    RHS has 8 new teachers this school year.

    The new teachers are Kathryn McNair, Lauren Eubanks, Maggie De La Cruze, Melanie Kent, Mackensey Farmer, Adam Anapolsky, Matt Johnston, and Scott Mauriss.

    Kathryn McNair teaches young adults with disabilities. McNair has a master’s degree and four different teaching credentials. She has been teaching for many years at Redlands East Valley High School (REV), and this year she moved to RHS.

    McNair previously taught credential classes at many different universities on a part-time basis. McNair says “I chose to become a teacher because I really do feel as though I can and do make a difference in the lives of students and families.”

    McNair likes getting her students and their families to dream big about the future. She uses interactive, student-focused, fun and a relaxed teaching style.

    “I encourage students by focus on the positive and get to know their individual strengths,” said McNair. She says “I want people to remember that I loved life and lived well.” Her favorite quote is “Create a life you don’t need a vacation from.”

    Another new teacher is Lauren Eubanks. Eubanks teaches sophomore and senior English classes.

    Eubanks received her bachelor’s degree from Cal Poly Pomona, English teaching credential through University of Redlands (UofR), Social Science credential through University of Riverside, and she will be finishing her master’s degree through the University of Redlands (U of R).

    Eubanks student taught last year at Upland High School. “I originally wanted to be an Equine Vet (Horse vet), but I would want to take all of my patients home with me,” Eubanks said.

    “I love reading, writing, and history and I love the high school age group.  I volunteered and observed in a classroom and was hooked,” she said.

    Eubanks  is a first-year  teacher. “The interview process in Redlands is very thorough. There were multiple rounds; one round was a few hours!  I am grateful Redlands chose me,” she said. She also said “I can be goofy. If you ask my students they would tell you I act things out for them.”

    “I am new and I am still learning.  I am learning the curriculum here. I am learning the

teacher dynamic. I am learning what works best for my students. I absolutely love the conversations and ‘class debates’ that I have with my classes!  Hearing them express their opinion in a civil way and having in depth conversations about an issue they care about is so wonderful to see!” Eubanks said.

    “I feel as though I am a passionate teacher.  I love reading and writing. I hope that my passion allows them to find their passion,” she said.

    Maggie De La Cruz is returning to RHS as the Latin I-IV teacher.  De La Cruz, formerly known at RHS as Maggie Cohn, left RHS a few years ago to teach at Citrus Valley and Redlands East Valley High Schools.

    De La Cruz earned her Bachelor degree in History and Classics from the University of Arizona (U of A), a Master degree in Classics from the U of A and a teaching credential in Latin and English Language Arts from the U of R.

    Before teaching high school, De La Cruz taught undergraduate language course at the U of A for two years, exchange students at the U of A’s study abroad program in Orvieto, Italy for one year, and 7th and 8th grade at Scottsdale Preparatory Academy in Arizona for one year.

    De la Cruz is known for her organization, love of Latin, and puns to help her in teaching. She says “I decided to become a teacher at the age of 23 when I was working on my master’s degree. There were opportunities for graduate students to teach the introductory Latin courses at the UofA.  I taught all four courses: Latin 101, 102, 201, and 202, while completing my master’s degree. Graduate teaching fellows teach one class per semester while working on graduate course work, qualifying and comprehensive exams, and the M.A. thesis.”

  “As a young adult, I was incredibly shy so teaching college students was a huge and frightening challenge for me.  I remember I brought a typed 20-page script on the very first day of class; it began “hello my name is Ms…” Several students may have dropped that very day—I don’t remember.  By the end of the semester, I had tossed the script and I realized just how much I LOVED teaching Latin! I was truly passionate about it and knew I was meant for just exactly this,” De La Cruz said.

    “Teaching is like being an artist, but our medium is the human mind and soul.  It is the most creative and rewarding job I can imagine. I am grateful and humbled to be able to do it.  Also, teenagers are hilarious. I would much rather spend the day with them than with grownups. Even on my worst day, I still love my job!”

    When asked how De La Cruz motivates her classes, she said “I strive to make all students feel comfortable and I reward students for doing their personal best. Growth is just as important as achievement; I try to make that clear in direct and indirect ways in everything I do.  In the words of the prolific actor and comedian John Cleese, ‘Nothing will stop you from being creative so effectively as the fear of making a mistake.’”

    Melanie Kent is the new Health Education teacher. She was a former RHS teacher ten years ago, left and came back to RHS this year. Kent also has previous teaching experience at Chino High School. She received her bachelor’s degree from Public Health at Cal State University San Bernardino (CSUSB), teaching credential from U of R, and is currently obtaining a Masters degree in Kinesiology at Cal Baptist University (CBU).

    Kent said she started teaching after trying other jobs. “My first career was in public health, I worked for the Riverside County and San Bernardino county public health departments. I loved being involved with health advocacy and educating others but did not love being in a cubicle, so I went back to school for my credential,” she said.

    “I am creative and organized. My creativity helps me plan new, fun, interactive lessons for my students. Being organized helps my students learn how to be organized,” Kent said.

    In ten years, Kent predicts “I see myself teaching at RHS! I would also like to be teaching nights at a community college.”

    Kent’s favorite quote is, “‘Through cultivation of friendliness, compassion, joy and indifference to pleasure and pain, virtue and vice respectively, the consciousness becomes favourably disposed, serene and benevolent.’ ~Patanjali’s Yoga Sutra I.33 I love this quote because it teaches me how to feel peace in a chaotic and busy world.”

    Chemistry teacher Mackensey Farmer is new to the science department at RHS. She has a Bachelor degree in Chemistry and a Master degree in Environmental Sciences from CSUSB, and a teaching credential from U of R. For the past 10 years, she has taught chemistry and dual enrollment environmental science at Beaumont High School.

    Farmer said, “I am hard-working and passionate about getting students to enjoy science, especially chemistry.”

    After asking her how she motivates her students, she said, “I try to encourage students and teach them responsibility is to get them involved in the classroom. I show them that chemistry is used every day by ‘real’ people which gives it new importance.”

    “I try to teach by example and get all the students involved in class because we are a team and need to help everyone to succeed. The greatest success would be getting students to think differently about science or chemistry so much that they decide to pursue it in college,” Farmer said.

    Farmer’s most memorable memory is when “two former students came to visit several years after graduation, they tell me they’re married and expecting their first child! They said they would have never met if I didn’t have them sit together in class and be lab partners.”

    In the future, Farmer said “Who knows what 10 years will bring, maybe I will be an assistant principal!?”

   New teachers Adam Anapolsky, Matt Johnston, and Scott Mauriss were also contacted and were unavailable to comment.


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