Stayin’ Merry with Mr. Terry


For several months now, Chapelle has been continuing its “Spotlight Teacher of the Month” award. Every month, students and parents recommend teachers whom they find amazing at what they do. Then, our Assistant Principal, Mrs. Susan Panzavecchia, collects all the votes and announces the winner! For December, our Western Civilization teacher Mr. Caleb Terry won this special award!

Junior Amber Corb interviewed our wonderful winner.

Q:  What made you want to become a teacher?

A:  “I don’t know what made me want to do it; I just know I wanted to be a teacher ever since fourth grade. I think it comes from a deep love for school and also just an obsession with knowing as much as I possibly can.  I just love sharing it with people. I started teaching and never wanted to stop, and I’ll be wanting to do it forever.”

Q:  Why did you decide to teach Western Civilization?

A:  “Mainly because history is the best and most functional subject you learn on a day-to-day basis. I originally majored in college in U.S. History, but I had to take a job teaching Western Civilization when I got my first teaching job.  Then I ended up falling in love with the subject, and it’s all I want to teach anymore. Also, it’s the most interesting of all the histories.” 

Q:  What’s your favorite part about teaching at Chapelle?

A:  “The students, for sure. I’ve never been in a place where kids can be as excited to be at school as they are here. Y’all love it whenever you get the opportunity to learn from a teacher who loves what he’s doing, and I love what I’m doing, so that’s what I love most.”

Q:  How long have you been teaching? (both at Chapelle and elsewhere)

A:  “Ten years. This will be my tenth year.”

Q:   What kind of student were you in school?

A:  “Horrible. I was very devious. I was not well-behaved, and I did not use my potential nearly as much as I should have. However, looking back on it, I feel like I’m making up for lost time because I’m trying to be the teacher I would’ve wanted — one who would inspire and push me, so it’s working out.”

Q:  What is your fondest Chapelle memory?

A:  “Well, I’ve only been here for like five minutes, but B period triumvirate basketball with Mr. Matherne and Mr. Wooderson.”

Q:  What do you like to do outside of school?

A:  “I love to read, and I love to garden. That’s my favorite hobby.”

Q:  Do you have any unique methods of teaching you like to employ in your classes?

A:  “I have a flipped classroom, which means my students receive most of their direct instruction at home. I also love active review, which I use a football for, and those are pretty much the big ones.”

Student Interviews

Q:  What makes Mr. Terry a great teacher?

Jaden Migliore: “Mr. Terry is very good at making the material interesting. He relates the different events in history to events in modern times. He also gets us involved in the lesson so you don’t have people falling asleep. Everyone is laughing and having fun. He also cares so much about his students and would do anything to help us.”

Laici Edrington: “He uses his “flipped classroom,” so we can actively learn the material both inside and outside of the classroom.”

Camryn Melancon: “He knows how to teach us in ways we’ll remember, and he knows how to make the class fun so that we want to learn. Also, he makes what we are learning interesting.” 

Q:  What is your favorite part of his class?

JM: “My favorite part is simply hearing his jokes; I never stop laughing–ever.”

LE: “Answering warm-up questions by catching his football and getting slightly off-topic when discussing a lesson.”

CM: “My favorite part is review days before tests when we play games.”

Q:  What is your favorite thing you’ve learned in class?

JM: “My favorite thing I’ve learned in class is about Christopher Columbus and the discovery of America.”

LE: “My favorite thing that I have learned in his class is about prosperity within the Renaissance period.”

CM: “My favorite thing he taught us was the lesson about space.”

Q:  What educational tools does Mr. Terry use in the classroom?

JM: “Mr. Terry uses so many different learning tools. He videos himself giving a lesson, and that’s our homework. This helps us because in class we review and learn more, so we really are understanding the material but getting things done at the same time. Mr. Terry also throws a football to you when you have a question or you’re answering a question.

LE:  “He uses Prezi to display his notes on the board and review games such as the “Mine Sweeper” game.”

CM: “He uses Prezi, the Smartboard, and a football.”

Q:  How would you describe Mr. Terry in three words?

JM:  “Mr. Terry is kindhearted, humorous, and passionate.”

LE:  “Supportive, intelligent, and boisterous.”

CM: “Nice, funny, and helpful.”

Congratulations, Mr. Terry! To nominate your favorite teacher for “Spotlight Teacher of the Month,” make sure to fill out a ballot outside Mrs. Panzavecchia’s office.