This week’s installment of our “Why I Teach” series spotlights middle school math teacher Ms. Gardony (formerly Ms. Gerson), another of our faculty who has a passion for teaching in her DNA. All great teachers know how to command the “stage” at the front of the classroom; Ms. Gardony also shares her passion for theater with students in the drama club extracurricular.
Why I Teach: Jenny Gardony
I have known I wanted to be a teacher since I was young. Both of my grandmothers were teachers in Philadelphia, and I saw how their career choice shaped their lives. One of them, “Grandma,” was a wonderful second grade teacher for many years. She loved her students, and they in turn loved her. I remember having lunch with her, many years after she had retired, and seeing a middle-aged man come up to her and ask if she was his teacher. Not only did this man remember my grandmother, but he told her that she had touched his life. At this moment, as an eleven-year-old girl, I saw that teachers have the power to shape people’s destiny. I saw that a hardworking, passionate, caring teacher could help a little boy become the man he was meant to be. I was awed that my grandmother had played a role in that, and I decided that I wanted to be a teacher, just like her.
I decided to teach because helping students find a passion for learning seemed like the most important thing I could do. As a teacher, I am humbled and excited that families and society trusts me to help guide their young people to adulthood. I know that if I work hard enough, that if I hold my scholars to high enough expectations, and that if I’m caring enough to provide the supports they need, the young people I teach will become model citizens who care for others and thirst for knowledge. I can only hope to be a teacher like my grandma. When I’m 70, I hope that my former students are still learning.
A graduate of Tufts University, Ms. Gardony teaches Intermediate Math C, advises 9th graders, and co-directs the drama extracurricular.