Every teacher has his or her own approach to teaching. They each have different ideas of how to reach out to their students.
Out of the hundreds of teachers, students seem to agree with the style of one, Louis Morgan. This year, Mr. Morgan won the Yale Educator Award, an honor given to outstanding teachers.
They are nominated directly by the students. After the submissions are taken in, the managers of the Yale Educator Recognition Program does a background check to assess the validity of students’ choice and eventually determines the winners.
“Maybe what makes my method so good is that I try to relate to the students; I try to speak to them at their level. I show them respect. I think my number one thing is that I show them respect, I treat them as equals,” said Mr. Morgan.
He has 19 years of experience teaching Biology. He started his career in Jamaica where he taught an equivalence of Regent’s Biology in an all-girls school. After six years, Mr. Morgan came to the US and started teaching Biology in Brooklyn Tech.
What makes him unique among the other teachers nominated is he always looks for new ways to teach. Every year the AP Biology exam changes, he adapts his lesson with it. Each year, for the past few years, he has made new lesson plans.
Another unique method he has is assigning roles to rows every day. Some days, students in the first and third row will have to lead the discussion of the day and answer questions. On other days, the task will be given to the second and fourth row. Still, all students are expected to contribute even if it is not their day. This helps engage the entire class.
A typical day includes lesson notes following group work. Sometimes, Mr. Morgan calls for a presentation, where students get fifteen minutes to create a play about the topic taught that day. Activities like this help improve student interest in the topic, both in the classroom and out. This is one of the key methods that Morgan uses to better himself and his teaching.
When asked about what she feels an ideal teacher is, Shanjida Alam ’14 says,” An ideal teacher is one who doesn’t try to be an enemy to the student, but a friend. If the teacher is approachable and helps the student to the best of their abilities, then they can be defined as an ‘ideal teacher’.”
Nabilah Nishat ‘14 agrees that students should easily be able to talk to a teacher saying, “They are the ones who stay after school extra late to listen to students’ problems, whether it’s academic or personal,” said
Mr. Morgan believes, “Trying to understand the students and relating to them is one of the most important aspects of being a teacher. Their critique is vital,”