2011 Retired teacher Q&A

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Courtesy of Camdenton School District

Mike Wackerman

Name: Mike Wackerman

School: Camdenton Middle School

Grade/Subject: Technology and shop

Experience: 26 years with the Camdenton School District

Hometown: Drexel

Tell us about your family: My wife, Amy, and I have been married for 34 years. We have two great children. Our daughter Kelsey is married to Tim Adams. She attended school in the district and was a very successful athlete in volleyball. She also coached here at the school for a period of time. My son, Jake, was also a very successful athlete. He was an integral part of the ’05 state championship football team.

Q: What inspired you to become a teacher?

A: I was motivated to be a teacher by two of my high school teachers, Mr. Hunt and “Sir” (as everyone called him). Mr. Hunt was my math teacher and coach. His honest, blunt and caring attitude is probably how I patterned myself with students. “Sir” also known as Mr. Edmonds, was my shop teacher grades 7-12 and stimulated my desire to work in the industrial arts areas and to later share my skills with students. Both men were models for me that helped to form my ideas about many different areas.

Q: What extracurricular activities were you involved in throughout your teaching career?

A: I have coached, driven a bus and have been involved in different school groups. One of the groups I took great pride in helping start and building was BACK UP, a drug-awareness group. Several teachers and myself had the privilege of involving, sometimes as many as three to four hundred students, in a group to promote the non-use of various drugs and to develop a positive peer group.

Q: What is a memorable moment from your teaching career?

A: What I will remember most are those moments when you look at a young person and see in their eyes the excitement and pride of accomplishing a goal or completing a project.

Q: What will you do now that you are you are retired?

A: As the song “Some Beach, Somewhere” says “Having nowhere to go and all day to get there” might be the best way to describe what I am going to do.

Q: Do you have any advice for someone who wants to go into education?

A: Focus on the kids, focus on the kids and try to minimize the effect of all the other “stuff.” Be honest and real with the kids or they will see right through you.

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