Thoughts, links & ideas from the 2008 National Teacher of the Year

Each time I've taken off in a plane since May (which is a lot), I've been writing in my journal, then adding these journal entries on this blog.

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(Note: the blue posted dates are actually the dates I wrote the journal entries, not when I posted them online.)

Thursday, February 19, 2009

News Flash: Teacher of the Year Interacts with Live Adolescents!

Tulsa, OK – In a rare move Thursday, National Teacher of the Year, Michael Geisen, was allowed to interact with actual public school students.  Witnesses report seeing brief conversations and even physical contact such as handshakes and pats on backs.  There were no injuries, but students were advised to have their doctor or psychiatrist evaluate them for unseen damage.


In a break with protocol, Geisen, 35, eschewed his position at the reserved table and instead sat with a group of 6th grade students who had come to hear him speak.  Lunch consisted of pasta, salad and bread.


“We took a big risk inviting adolescents to a celebration of learning,” remarked Dr. Debbie Landry of Northeastern State University in Tahlequah, Oklahoma.  “But it seemed to pay off, as there were no major incidents.”


When asked to comment on Geisen’s interactions, Dr. Landry was pleased.  “We had interpreters on hand, but Mike seemed to speak their language, and understand them, as well.”


“I was a bit nervous about it,” admits Geisen, who is on a yearlong sabbatical as a spokesperson for education.  “But I guess it’s a bit like riding a bike.  It comes back to you when you need it.”


Geisen is at home in central Oregon for the next day, recuperating with his family.  He will resume his travels on Saturday.


  1. Good thing you weren't injured. I'll bet the security tapes show inconspicuous bystanders speaking into their cuffs. Probably you got out of there just in time!

  2. I could swear that I felt the heat of a little red laser light on my forehead at times. "One false word..."


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