Most Memorable Teachers

We all have memories of the years spent in school. Many of our lives have been influenced by the teachers we loved and respected. They helped to change us and set us on a path to the future.  Please send me stories and photos of your most memorable teachers and I will post them on this page.

August 1, 2008

I have a particular fondness for Mrs. Parver (6th grade P.S. 156) who gave me permission, if my parents also agreed, to read adult books in the sixth grade.
I read Brave New World. She encouraged me as a poet, praising me and supporting me as I struggled to put my concerns and new ideas into a creative form. I wrote about the bomb, and fantasy poems.  I've won several awards for my writing including the National Endowment for the Arts. Her affirmation, support and acknowledgment, solidified my dream.

Lezli H. White   Email Address:

July 17, 2008

Mrs. Greenspan was my teacher in fifth grade at PS 156. I don't know if it was her (I think it was) or that time in our lives but fifth grade seemed to be a magic time for many of us. I used to think it was just me but 10 years ago, an old fifth grade classmate called me up and tried to organize a fifth grade class reunion! It never happened but imagine that. It was special for her too!

Mrs. Greenspan encouraged us to be individuals and to stand up for our ideas. I recall her saying it was easy to be quiet but speaking out could change the world. And how I wanted to change the world. I remember Elliot Gordon, Willie Rodriquez, Toby Rosenberg, Cynthia Dilbert, Cynthia Blatt, Leslie Feldman, Steven Greenberg, Marilyn Miller, Louis Rich, Ezekiel Sachs, David Diamond, Ann Defalco, Ken Provoter, Mark Weiss, Anita Fuchs, Sue Ellen Aptmen Pat Bernstein, Lori Benti,Jeffery Levin and Barbara Feirstein.

I would love to hear from some of those old classmates. Of course Elliot has been a friend for life and I recently (through this web-site) talked to Cynthia Blatt.

Ken Goodgold    Email Address:

July 6, 2008

Hi Skip,

The teacher who stands out most in my elementary school education at P.S. 38 was Mrs. Murphey. She was a severe and sour presence in long black dresses and black lace-up "old lady" shoes.

One day, while we and the other 8th grade were lined up in the hall and she was yelling at us for something, her false teeth fell out of her mouth and onto the floor. We were so afraid of her that not one of the 50-odd students standing there dared to even crack a smile!

And yet, to this day, 53 years later, I can still diagram a sentence the way she taught me.

Pearl "Penny" Rosenberg      Email Address:

April 20, 2008

Mrs. Krantz was by far the best arithmetic teacher I ever had. Ever. She was wonderful. Still remember her teaching us how to write a bank deposit slip!! Mrs.Wenhold was the music appreciation teacher and scared us all to death and and into silence. I can still see her sitting at her desk, arms folded over her abundant bosom, playing classical records for us. I am forever grateful to Mrs. Wild (sp?) who taught English like no one else before or after and if it wasn't for her I never would have mastered Latin or any other literary endeavor!

Mr. Baron was the principal; Mr. Kelly was the super, forever on call, for emergencies of all types... and yes, Laurelton was a wonderful place to grow up in. I lived there from pre-kindergarten to after marriage, but those years at 156 were the best! Graduated in Jan. 1947. Went on to Rockaway for 6 months and was then shipped off to Pennsylvania to a wonderful boarding school ..... Adelphi for a year and many adventures thereafter!

Would love to hear from any and all of my classmates...

Diane Lurie Domroe   Email Address:

April 20, 2008

MR. JAMES MORRIS, my 9th grade English teacher at JHS 59, had the most positive impact on me of any teacher. I became a teacher at age 50 and it was only at that time I realized how extraordinary Mr. Morris had been in the classroom. In 9th grade he made me feel like "a writer." Up till then I was a schoolboy writing assignments for class. But with Mr. Morris I wrote stories and poems and, for the first time ever, thought of myself as a writer. Being co-editor of the JHS 59 literary magazine was a big deal for me at the time. And at the age of 13, gawky and scrawny and smart-ass and feeling low about myself, I truly believed Mr. Morris liked me. Now that I'm a teacher i think of Mr. Morris and I hope his spirit can guide me to alway have a classroom where young people feel good about themselves.

Hank Machtay     Email Address:


July 26, 2006

The chairman of the math department at Jackson and AP Calculus teacher was so good that I sailed through a year of college calculus without learning anything new, getting straight A's. Plus, he had a name worthy of Mr. Hand in "Fast Times at Ridgemont High." Who can forget Dr. Lester W. Schlumpf?

Carl Lederman, AJHS 64   Email Address:

July 24, 2006

Dear Skip:

I 'd like to nominate Ruth Krantz for a Most Memorable Teacher Column. I have been in touch with Bobbie Kriegel and we agree that as far back as the '30s and '40s she was a fabulous teacher. Bob said that her penmanship was like a course in cursive writing. I found her to be strict and fair. She had a noticeable sense of humor. I remember going with class members from PS 156 to the N. Y. Worlds Fair of 1939. She was one of our chaperones. We had a heck of a time. I think the other teacher was Mrs. Wenhold. Not sure of the name but I do remember her severity and huge buck teeth that preceded her into the class room. It was a most fabulous time in our lives. Thank you for the new site.

Howie Katz   Email Address:

July 19, 2006

My most memorable teacher would have to be Mrs. Semon, a fifth grade teacher in PS 132. Quite the sadist! Made long division so traumatic for me I cringe when I see more than four numbers together with a division sign! My favorite beloved teacher at 132 was Mildred Middlemiss, second grade. Patient, loving, funny made learning a joy and I owe my love of reading to her to this day. She actually thought the principal could hear us through the loudspeakers in our classroom!!  Anyone interested in a 132 reunion for all years? Contact me. 

Janet (Maday) Shapiro     Email Address:

July 16, 2006

I came to 156 in April of '59, I was in third grade. It was very intimidating to come to this new school so late in the year.  I loved Mrs. Cohen's (5th grade) stories and slides of her travels. I had never left NYC so it was fascinating to me to see all these places.  Ms. Seligson (6th) was tough but fair. My favorite memories of 156 are from the summers when they had a type of school/camp - my brothers and I would hang out there.

Robin Fremer Email Address:

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