The school year 2016 - 17 is my 18th year as a High School history teacher at Woods. During that time I have also been fortunate to serve for fifteen years as a senior class advisor, for two years on the Woods School Board, for two years as basketball coach, and even served for several months as the Interim Principal in the Summer/Fall of 2002. Through all of these experiences I have become one the strongest advocates of all that Woods represents. I believe that Woods offers a unique educational opportunity in the central North Carolina region for students who want a challenging education and are interested in pursuing a college/ university degree in the future. We have an outstanding record of university acceptances at local universities such as UNC-Chapel Hill, NCSU, UNC-G, etc. as well as at other major colleges and universities - both public and private - both in our state and throughout the nation. Most importantly, we have always endeavored to help every student to achieve their maximum potential within the context of a caring and supportive school community.
Educationally, I have a BA degree in History from North Carolina State University and a Diploma in Polish Language and Culture for two years of study at the University of Cracow, Poland. I was greatly inspired to study history, government, and politics by several outstanding professors at NCSU. However, my understanding of these subjects has been most enhanced by living, studying, and teaching for five years in Cracow, Poland from 1982-1987 as well as by traveling throughout Europe and the United States for the past thirty-five years. I am interested in all areas of history and government since they are all connected, but my favorite areas of study are: (1) the history of ideas (e.g., religious, political, scientific, etc); and, (2) the combination of European and United States history from the Renaissance to the present , especially the 20th century. My favorite historians include, among many others: John Lukacs, Paul Johnson, and Martin Gilbert. They are all prolific, insightful, and extremely interesting writers and I would recommend any and all of their works. In addition, I enjoy reading the world press and my favorite newspapers include The International New York Times published in Paris and The Wall Street Journal including its international editions which can be read on-line. My favorite news magazine is The Economist published in London which I've enjoyed reading for over forty years and which I receive by regular mail weekly. I consider all of these publications the best of their kind in the world and extremely helpful in keeping up with world affairs.
Outside of school my favorite thing to do is spend time with my best friend and dear wife, Dorota Temple, whom I met while living in Poland. We have been married now for thirty-two years and it has been an incredible journey along the way. Though she is a physicist and I am a history teacher, our other interests coincide. They include reading, hiking/walking, and traveling. We are also active members of Cary Christian Fellowship, lead a weekly adult Bible study fellowship in our home, and edit a biblical studies newsletter/web-site entitled The Unity of the Spirit.
During my first eight years at Woods I had the privilege and challenge of teaching every history and social studies course for grades 9-12 in our high school. However, as the school has grown and expanded so our faculty has grown and expanded as well. I now teach part time in the mornings and mainly focus on teaching U.S. history at AP, Honors and Regular levels as well as helping with college advising.
My basic philosophy in teaching History, Civics, and Government at Woods is:
(1) To ensure that every student gains a fundamental scope and understanding of history so as to help them to understand the world in which they live today.
(2) To ensure that every student understands their rights, duties and responsibilities as U.S. citizens so as to help them to live meaningful and productive lives wherever they are in the world.
I believe that history is "the core of all subjects" and that every other subject can be best understood against the background of how that subject developed historically. With this in mind, I try to enable every student to go as far as they want in their study of history.