Teaching middle school students in Wadsworth or in any other school district presents a number of challenges. But, its the grade level Wadsworth Middle School Social Studies teacher Brent Ferguson wouldn’t trade for the world.
“When I tell people what grade level I teach at and I tell them Middle School, they say ooooh, or something similar” Ferguson laughed. “I wouldn’t want to teach at any other level. The kids are great. It’s a hard age, as we remember. Kids today are trying to fit in and standout at the same time. On top of that, they’re trying to grow up and mature as well.”
“Everyday they come to my classroom they want to learn. They challenge me with some of the questions they ask. They keep me on their toes. They’re starting to mature and we can get into the curriculum a bit deeper because of that,” said Ferguson.
The 7th grade classes that Brent Ferguson teaches start at Ancient Civilizations and continues through the Exploration Age. “We start with Ancient Greece and Rome and go from there. The students have a lot of knowledge about Greek and Roman mythology that they bring to the table. There are some great stories in mythology, starting with Hercules.”
Ferguson says it helps a lot when he can relate elements of 21st Century society to what happened in ancient times. “In 8th grade, these students will study the U.S. Constitution and they’ll see how the governments of Ancient Greece and Rome have had huge impact on us. So has the Magna Carta”.
“While students may not remember what Charlemagne did during the Middle Ages in later life, but if they remember how the song ‘Ring around the Rosie’ relates to Black Death, then we’ve had some degree of success”, Ferguson said.
By talking with Brent Ferguson, you sense the passion that he feels in teaching students who are at hard stage in life, and enjoys each and every day he shares with them.
Our thanks to Brent Ferguson for appearing as a guest on Terrific Teacher Tuesday on Wadsworth Community Radio.