I always used the word "Passion" with my students and
defined it as "deep caring" or "gives a damn." I taught
because it kept me fresh and full of ideas. I choose the
middle level because that's where I was turned on to art.
I had a strong, caring art teacher in Junior High, as we
called it then. C W McWaid was his name. Later we would
be colleagues when I began teaching. Now, I've always had
an interest in drawing. I was an only child, my mother
raised me and my grandmother on the tips she made as a
waitress. Somehow she managed to send me to Art Camp at
the University of Kansas for two summers. She also had
my work framed under glass. That was a moral booster.
Except for art, I was a poor student. In Kansas they
admit all Kansas High School Grads into state universities.
I went for a year and a half till our first son was born.
Then I got a job in a automobile plant in Kansas City.
I went back to school part time and finally got serious.
My employer covered my tuition as I continued toward my
teaching degree. Working, I mean "Physical Labor" taught
me that I did not want to "work" for a living, so teaching
art was perfect. It was so much more fun to play at something
I loved rather than work.
So that's the story of how I ended up teaching art for
27 years at Rosedale Middle School. Now, in retirement I
can work on my passion for watercolors. If I put enough
energy into it perhaps I'll even get good at that too.