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Mike B's Teacher Feature

Get to know the teachers here at CHS by reading Mike Bornstein's Interviews

Mrs. Kelly


1. If you could go anywhere in the world, where would it be?

I couldn’t choose just one place, so I would have to say Australia or Italy because I heard both were beautiful. In Italy, I’d love to see Tuscany and Venice, as some of my friends and family have gone. In Australia, I have no particular place I’d like to go, I’d just like to see anywhere!


2. What’s at the top of your bucket list?

The top of my bucket list is visiting all fifty states. I have been to twenty-nine so far, so I’m on my way there. I haven’t seen any of the southern states though, so I would love to travel there. They have these tours in the southern states for African American history, and I’d love to do that.


3. What class at Canton High would you like to take?

There’s so many, but I’ve always wanted to be in Ms. Byrne’s psychology class. I’d love to just have her as a teacher, but also I think that what she teaches is so interesting. 


4. What life accomplishment are you most proud of?

I’m most proud of being a mom. I have a two and a half year old and a one year old. They’re the joy of everyday to me. It’s a challenge, but it’s a good challenge and I am very appreciative that I have the chance to be a mom - it’s really a great experience. 


5. What do you like most about being a teacher?

The kids. Everyday is different, hilarious, and challenging. My job is never boring, and I get to be a student everyday because I’m learning from the kids in my room so it's a really great job to have.



Mr. Goff


1) If you could go anywhere in the world, where would it be?


As weird as it sounds, it’s probably not as exotic as where other people might want to go. I used to live in New Orleans and I would love to go back. I lived there for about six years, but I haven’t been back since 2005. I miss the food, the people, and the music. I’d love to go back for a little while. I was actually born in Massachusetts, but I went to college in New Orleans and stayed there for a couple of years after I graduated. It was a very important part of my life for six years, and I used to go back pretty regularly, but I would really like to go back and see the sites and the old “stomping grounds” again. I lived in uptown New Orleans, which is right in the middle of the city. I went to college there at Tulane, but now the campus is all changed. As a football player, it used to stink because you would have to take a bus ride to the Superdome for home games, but luckily, they’ve put a football stadium on the campus since then. Their team is good this year, but when I was there, we played an ACC/SCC hybrid so we basically got squashed by every team. 


2) What was your most embarrassing moment as a teacher?


I’ve actually ripped the entire backside of my pants twice. I was moving around the room trying to be engaging, trying to work with different groups of students on a project. While I was moving around, I squatted down to speak with a group and proceeded to rip the entire backside of my pants. There were 23 to 25 students in the class and it happened maybe my third or fourth year here. Fortunately, I had a pair of running pants in my car, so I was able to solve that problem. It actually happened again not too many years ago where, once again, I ended up having to use emergency pants that were in my car because the backside of my pants ripped moving around from group to group. So I have learned a valuable lesson, and that’s to keep an emergency pair of pants in my car at any time in case they rip. That has happened as a teacher twice in my twenty year career here in Canton and I don’t believe it has happened to too many other people!


3) What do you like most about being a teacher?


That’s an interesting question because I never wanted to be a teacher growing up.  I know some people say that it’s totally what they want to do from the time that they were little. It’s been 22 or 23 years now and I love it. I love working with young people. It’s something different every day, every year, every class. Young people are fun to work with. They keep you young. It’s great when you see someone learn something or when you can get someone excited about something that you’re excited about. It’s fantastic. I have former students (they’re old now) with whom I still keep in touch with. It’s great to see their families grow, their careers take off .It’s just very rewarding. It’s a profession that I had never really considered, but now I can’t think about doing anything else. I originally went to college to be a lawyer. I also did some different things- I worked in finance and marketing and I trained to be a chef.  I moved back to Massachusetts after two years and was looking for the next step in my career. I started substitute teaching because I needed some money! Then I got hired by a private school, worked there for two years, and then came to Canton. I’ve been here since 2001! I fell into teaching and I’m just so fortunate that I did. I love working with the young people here every day. I just have a blast.


4) How do you spend your summer breaks?


I have three children, three daughters. We go to New Hampshire a lot --a couple of  different places-- and we enjoy that. We have family outings and family trips. They are getting a bit older now so a lot of the time they want to do different things. My kids love to swim and all those other summer things. It’s great. I used to love to travel all over the country, or all over the world  if I could, during the summer. But now with the kids, I end up going between camps and everything and I’m just trying to spend as much time with them as I can. I don’t take the time I can spend with family and friends for granted anymore, based on my past health issues. I just embrace and enjoy every moment I get.


5) What life accomplishment are you most proud of?


 I don’t know what’s considered a great accomplishment! I haven’t climbed Mount Everest or written a best-seller. At this point, I feel somewhat inadequate based on that question! I’d have to say it’s my family- it’s so important and it’s just great watching the girls grow. It’s awesome. There are a lot of things I’ve done with them that I am proud of. But, I don’t know. I’m still waiting for the big one. I don’t know when that’s going to happen!


6) What class would you like to take at Canton High?


I would love to take a history class here. I think I would do well. I hope I would do well!  I’d also love to take a TV production class! That was something that was never available to me in high school. I’ve seen some of the work the kids here have done and it’s really amazing. It would be an opportunity to do something I’ve never done before. They’re always “doing something” in that room- I wonder what’s going on in there and I feel like I want to be a part of it! It would be a REALLY interesting class. I feel like I could be an actor, or get into my “directing” mode.


Mrs. (Madame) Hallal


1. What is one fact about you that students don't know?


I lived in Spain and Mexico a little while ago. I lived in Salamanca, Spain and Cuernavaca, Mexico for 5 weeks each. I studied Spanish there. I'm not too fluent, but I would say I'm proficient. 


2. What is one of your hidden talents?


I would say I'm a pretty good singer. I don't sing in a chorus and we didn't have it offered at school, but I took singing lessons for a short period of time and I enjoyed doing it.


3. If you could go anywhere in the world, where would it be?


I would love to go to Tahiti, a small country in French Polynesia. It's French speaking and I like warm weather. It has been a place that has interested me for a long time. 

4. What class at Canton High would you like to take?


I would like to take AP Psychology and/or Philosophy. I like the concept of philosophy and I studied it while I studied French. I like psychology because I'm interested in how the mind works. 


5. What do you like most about being a teacher?


I love the energy of the students and the fun we have together. I come from a family of teachers. My dad and a lot of my cousins were teachers and my aunt is a librarian. My grandmother was a design fashion teacher at the Rhode Island School of Design for 30 years and they've inspired me to become a teacher as well.


Mr. Murphy


1. What is one fun fact about you that students don’t know?


I really like to cook and I’m starting to like baking. When I’m home, sometimes the most peaceful thing for me is to just be in the kitchen, either cooking or cleaning up after it. I like to make pasta and sauce from scratch, but I’m not a big fan of making big meals like Thanksgiving dinners because it seems pretty stressful. If I have a lot of time to cook, though, I really enjoy doing it. 


2. If you could go anywhere in the world, where would it be?


I would like to take my family to Italy. I’ve been there once before to study while I was in college, and I would love to go back and spend some time there. I don’t know how realistic it is, but it would be cool to live right outside of a bigger city, maybe Tuscany for instance. During college, I studied in Siena, which is actually in Tuscany and about an hour away from Florence, for four months of the second semester of my junior year. It was an old, walled city which was really cool and my experience there was great. I studied Italian art, culture, and language there.


3. What class at Canton High would you like to take?


I don’t even know if he still teaches it, but I believe Mr. Devoid teaches a philosophy course, and I think that would be a lot of fun. I’d also like to take the psychology class, as I’m really interested in those types of sciences. 


4. What life accomplishment are you most proud of?


I’m proud of having a daughter, a family, and a house. I saw myself as having these things and now I’m there. My daughter’s name is Alice and she’s seventeen months old. She’s a lot of fun to be around!


1. What is one fact about you that students don’t know?


“I do Kendo and Iaido, which is Japanese fencing. You’re probably thinking of the white suit, the European fencing, right? It’s not that, though. It’s from the Japenese, the Samurai. We wear a blue helmet, two blue boxing gloves, and a protector for the body. Before I was married, I practiced five times a week. There’s a place in Randolph near the Higashi School, a place called Boston Kendo Kyokai. Every Saturday, I drive to Amherst to see my sensei, who I met in college.”

2. What is one of your hidden talents?


“In Kendo, I am a practitioner of something called Nito-ryu. It translates as ‘the way of two swords’, or ‘the path of two swords’. I practice with a sword in each hand, and the fighting from Star Wars was actually based on Kendo. Kendo came from something called Kenjitsu, which is the real killing that Samurai practice.”


3. What class at Canton High would you like to take?


“I’ve taken most of the classes they have to offer during high school and grad school, so I would actually prefer to just shadow different classes just to see how the teaching styles are done. I wish I had more time to go to other classes and just observe people. Even when I have a prep, I’ll visit Mr. Dybdahl, for example, but I can only do so for five or ten minutes. Whenever I see other teachers teach, it’s like ‘Oh, that’s how you teach that topic’. I learn different styles, everyone has their own personality. They build their own skill set, and from there they can apply different ideas and different ways of delivering the same idea.”


4. What’s at the top of your bucket list?


“I would like to pass the fourth degree black belt test in Kendo, called 4th Dan. I currently have 3rd Dan. Before black belt, it’s called Kyu, and it goes in reverse. It’s like 6th Kyu, 5th Kyu, 4th Kyu, etc., and then 1st Dan, 2nd Dan, 3rd Dan, etc. The highest is 8th Dan. Actually, just two days ago, the world champion traveled to the Boston area and I got to practice with him. So what happens is once a year, Japan holds the biggest tournament with the highest level people. This guy was number one in the world. Usually afterwards, they do something called an educational tour in which they go around the world and show their amazing Kendo to everyone. So, he came to the Boston area and I went to see him. We squared up, communicated a little with the swords, trying to feel each other out and find the opening. I think I have a headstrike, I go for the head, and as I do so, he immediately cuts my wrist, POW! The armor is really good though so it doesn’t hurt. Also, when your at a higher level, you know how to control the sword so it doesn’t hurt anyone. You get bruised from beginners because they don’t know what they’re doing. They think it’s like a baseball bat and hit you really hard. But the higher the level and the more skilled the person is, the better it feels actually, it’s like really soft. So you hear a loud sound, POW!, but it doesn’t really hurt at all….I lost in four seconds. He’s a 7th Dan. He’s not old enough to attempt 8th Dan, there’s an age requirement.”


5. If I could go anywhere in the world, where would it be?


“I just went to Europe with my wife, and it was really beautiful. I would like to re-visit this place in the Netherlands called Giethoorn, considered the ‘Venice of the North’. There are a lot of canals, a lot of houses and nice residential areas. It was so beautiful, I’d spend a couple days there.”

Mrs. Iacobucci 

  1. What is one of your hidden talents?


I can do a pretty decent cartwheel.  I could probably walk on my hands on a good day.


     2. What's at the top of your bucket list?

I am hoping to write and publish a book of poetry (in the next year or so, fingers crossed).


     3. What class at Canton High would you like to take?


Definitely Mr. Hiltz's Political Science elective class.


     4. What life accomplishment are you most proud of?


I self-published a YA book called The Trouble with Pretty.  


     5. What do you like most about being a teacher?


I love the students here. They bring me so much joy. I teach them cool stuff and, in return, they share their lives and opinions and dreams with me. Most days with them are a blessing.

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