For most people, a passion is discovered at a relatively young age and turns into what they dedicate their lives to. This could not be more opposite for US History and AP European History teacher, Linda Garvey, who never took to the idea of becoming a teacher.
Garvey had many interactions with children before she eventually became a teacher, but perhaps the most memorable was when she worked at Disneyland over the summer.
“I lived in Southern California until I was 28 and I worked at Disneyland during the summer between my freshman and sophomore year of college. I worked at the Coca Cola Corner on Main Street and was able to see the Electrical Parade every night. By that time of night, the kids were always crying and I was thinking that was definitely not the ‘happiest place on Earth,'” said Garvey.
Despite her many adventures in Southern California, Garvey moved to Willits, Calif. to continue with her internship at the time.
This is where her love for history blossomed, “I was the museum curator for the Mendocino Museum. I was really fascinated with the history being told through objects or the material history. And getting to talk with the people who owned these objects made it so much better,” said Garvey.
Eventually, Garvey’s position as a museum curator required her to move and she did what was best for her family, “I had three children and I just couldn’t do that to them. That was when I decided to get my teaching credential,” said Garvey.
What was once an over-looked occupation soon became a full-blown passion after memorable experiences with her son.
“Before, I never really wanted to be a history teacher because I didn’t have the greatest experience with my history teachers in high school. But when my son became a teenager, I loved talking with him about politics and I realized that I actually like teenagers,” said Garvey.
Students like Sara Cadona, a junior and a student of Garvey’s, are even able to detect that her family values shine through her teaching.
“I used to not like history but this year she is making me like it more because she relates the past to what is currently happening right now. I can tell that she is able to relate to us and be very understanding because of the strong ties she has with her family,” said Cadona.
And her decision to become a teacher has never been regretted as every day is a surprise for Garvey. “I find it really fun when kids get it and the lightbulb goes off. Kids are really fresh and optimistic about everything. My days go by really quickly and there is never a dull moment,” said Garvey.
Garvey’s enthusiasm has definitely reached her students as well. Kaitlyn Kelly, a junior and a student of Garvey’s, said, “She always wants to make sure that we understand what our instructions are, especially for writing. She also gives us a lot of examples and lets us discuss with other people to gain more information on a topic.”