Mister D: Before I start talking about this video, I just want to say a few things. I know, I know…yawn, yawn, now you’re rolling your eyes…whatever! 🙂 I’d just like to say that I’ve always had a strong affinity for teachers – good teacher, great teachers – there’s nothing like it if you ever experience one, because they inspire. They do this through enthusiasm, teaching through connecting on some personal/intellectual level (if that makes sense), encouraging growth, earning and gaining trust. My mother was one of those teachers when she taught English in high school (believe me, she just was, because I saw it in her student’s eyes and their hunger to learn). I think she is appalled some times how I have destroyed all of her hard work with me…(it’s revenge mother!) 🙂
Well, I get the same impression from Mr. Durham whom you are about to see in the video below. I think he teaches math to 12 and 13 year olds. I found out about him through his lovely wife, who’s very proud of him (as she should be) and reading some of the comments from his students. I’ve never met him, but one can have good instincts (like myself, of course!), and I can just tell that he’s one of those teachers that inspire. Okay I’m really talking to much. I’ll talk more below the video…LOL I just need to set it up.
Mr. Durham made a bet with his students that if the Eagles didn’t make it to the Super Bowl he would sing and dance on stage for the students and faculty. Well, you guessed it…the only Eagles that might even have the chance of going to the Super Bowl is the singing group, and that ain’t happening either…sorry, it’s Prince! yay! So the Eagles didn’t make it, and Mr. Durham kept his promise like a great teacher does. After perusing through lord knows how many songs, he picked The Divine Miss M’s, “Higher & Higher.” It has a great message, incredible energy, and enough enthusiasm to blow off the roof! His performance is so cute and inspired, I was laughing and tearing up at the same time. (Okay, I’m a little sentimental!) You can hear the enthusiasm and fun in the room…it’s contagious…another sign of a good teacher.
Ms. Durham says the kids loved the song so much that they looked for it online and started downloading it and it snowballed..with more than 1000 something downloads so far just from this video. Now how’s that for turning on a new generation to Miss M??? Now, BetteHeads, you gotta love that…more “friends!”
Okay, I hope I said what I wanted to say. I never feel comfortable with my writing. Here’s the video. I also put the link to the page where you can read or write comments. If you feel something, make a nice comment. I loved this statement from the student who posted the video (?): “he teaches us how to keep our promises and the true meaning of laughter … ”
Bottom line: I have a great respect for teachers. They have a hard job and are underpaid, and I’m not sure about this because I don’t have kids or work around them , but there seem to be less and less really good teachers because of it. I even wanted to be a teacher once until I figured out I didn’t like kids! (I kid, I kid!!!!) Mr. Durham seems like he has a special bond with the students and they love and respect him. I thought it was great he kept his word and was able to get up there and give it his all. He had to be exhausted after that song. I saw Bette perform it in 1975 in “Clams On the Half Shell” on Broadway atop a giant jukebox. It was exhausting to watch and tense. I really thought she was going to fall of the dang spinning turntable…LOL Ya’ll know how frenetic that song gets! Anyway, Mr. Durham captured the spirit. Bravo!
Far Below That Bottom Line: I don’t usually like to talk about my few meetings with Ms. Midler, but after her work with NYRP, she told me she would really like to help in the educational field. I had brought it up and her eyes just lit up. She is very concerned about the state of public schools in NYC. Funding keeps getting cut. We’re losing good teachers (so underpaid that we are losing those that could really make a difference in the future and direction of our country) We also talked about the lack of computers, the degeneration of libraries, funding for the arts, and even physical education ( I hated it growing up, but now I see why it was important) I know Ms. Midler works pretty silently right now with certain schools, but I can’t wait to see the day when she gets involved with schools and kicks some brass!
Thanks for listening ladies and germs. Thanks Mr. and Mrs. Durham. And thanks to the students who shared their teach with us! Now get back to your homework! You kids can call me:
MISTER D! 🙂