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Boyd’s Got the Momentum

What makes a good teacher? Is it their personality? The workload that they assign? The environment that their classroom fosters? For me, I’d say that it’s a combination of a variety of different factors, and Farmingdale High School is definitely not short on amazing teachers. Mrs. Kreuter in the Foods Department is awesome, and Mr. Viik in the Business Department is another great teacher (who actually got an article written about him a couple years ago). You can’t go wrong with Mr. Kramer, my AP Government teacher, who makes the AP test seem much more achievable, and Mrs. Bernstein, one of the chemistry teachers who made that subject much more manageable for me. Those are some examples of great teachers from my perspective. I’m sure that when I started talking about great teachers, some names popped into your head as well. But when I think of what a great teacher is, among the other names that I think of, one person that seems to always come back into the conversation, is Mr. Boyd.

For those of you who don’t know, Mr. Boyd is one of the teachers here at Farmingdale High School who teaches both Physics and SUPA Forensics, and I can say with confidence that both of these classes have been great experiences for me. There is rarely a day when I leave Mr. Boyd’s classroom without smiling or laughing at least once that class period.

The dynamic that Mr. Boyd has with myself and other students is not something that I can say I’ve experienced much of before. In my experience, Mr. Boyd treats his students as equals. That’s not to say that other teachers don’t respect you, but very few classrooms have an environment where students and teachers are on the same level of respect. Mr Boyd believes that a good classroom environment is “a place where everyone feels loved, heard, safe, challenged, cared for, welcomed, and a place where students want to be. If a classroom doesn’t meet those characteristics, I think it’s not going to meet the standard and ultimately fail both students and the teacher.” If the students don’t feel respected, they won’t engage in the work.

One thing that Mr. Boyd does to make his classroom stand out from the rest is the way he engages with the outside world before class officially starts. Nearly every day before we start learning, Mr. Boyd will pull up the news or a fun Instagram post as a way to engage with the students on interesting topics. The main purpose behind engaging with the students this way is to “make sure you guys are prepared and have the tools to derive value from this world, or at least know where to go if you want to engage with the world outside of routes 109 & 110. Beyond that, it’s an easy way to settle into class, check in with each other/ourselves before jumping into the content right away.”

Another thing that makes Mr. Boyd stand out is his obvious love for the job and what he does here. From the moment you step foot into the classroom, or the second you hear Mr. Boyd talking to the students, it’s obvious that he loves coming to the school and teaching the kids. “I love my job, genuinely, I feel so grateful that I get to wake up everyday and do this. I derive so much joy from the moments I spend with my students. I love that I get to be silly, engage with huge ideas, cutting-edge science, and wonderful people like yourself,” says Boyd. In my experience, when you have a teacher who loves their job, the students, more often than not, tend to also love the class. I can assure you that if I had not had Mr. Boyd or a teacher with a similar love for teaching when I took Physics, I would not have enjoyed that class as much as I did, which would have been a mistake, as the class was genuinely interesting. 

Hopefully after reading this, you can understand why I would pick Mr. Boyd as one of the great teachers at Farmingdale High School. After experiencing many different classes and many different teachers, I can confidently say that Mr. Boyd is one of the best teachers this school has to offer. Standing out from the rest is oftentimes a struggle for people. They may go too far in an attempt to stand out and alienate themselves from others. I can happily say after taking two classes and spending two years with Mr. Boyd, he definitely found a way to stand out from the pack.  “I do hope that if anything makes me stand out it’s that I say ‘love you’ to all of my students every single day, and I mean it. I do my best to take time and know my students as fully as I can. I try to be their cheerleader and in some cases offer some older-brother advice. Maybe I stand out because I’m still kinda young, or because I’m devilishly handsome (please include this in the article, the people need to know), or something else, but I hope it’s because of how much I love ‘my kids’.

 

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