Back to School

Another school year has arrived in America.  I can fondly remember the return of school both as a student and later as a teacher.  The classrooms will come alive with the energy of countless children under the instruction of caring teachers and staff.

boy in brown hoodie carrying red backpack while walking on dirt road near tall trees

Photo by Pixabay on

Store advertisements passionately proclaim

Ending another summer’s leisure and games


“Back to School” cries out across the land

Sounding like a hit song from a rock band


Lazy, easy days of summer are sadly ending

School days are approaching, no pretending


Summertime and kids at home will very soon end

Cheering parents welcome school, ready to begin


Teachers feel invigorated and all set to go

Preparing classrooms for learning to know


Families make ready for the kick off of school

Buying supplies and clothing—honestly cool!


Schools stand ready with a spotless shine

Cleaning, waxing, and repairs look all fine


Everything looks prepared for one more year

Learnin’ bout the three R’s, no reason to fear


Attention all children, wake-up and now hear

Ringing school bells announce far and near


“Back to School” has arrived for all

Moving forward from summer to fall

three men standing near window

Photo by Kobe Michael on

Can a Typewriter Fly?


close up photo of gray typewriter

Photo by Leah Kelley on

A trio of boys is always up to mischief at school.

Mrs. Hall is the very strict, no nonsense, typing teacher up on the second floor.  She runs her classroom like a well-run military operation.  She adores reading about General George S. Patton.

The typing classroom consists of the latest manual typewriter models.  (Sorry lad, no electric ones yet.)

The delinquent boys intend to surprise and shock Mrs. Hall this morning.  After all, there is nothing wrong with conducting a small science experiment from her classroom.

Have you ever seen a typewriter fly?

The boys sneak an old typewriter into Mrs. Hall’s classroom before the school day begins.

With a lookout posted near the classroom door, the other two boys open a window and place the typewriter on the ledge.

Just as Mrs. Hall walks into the room, her ever-alert eyes see the boys at the open window with the typewriter.

“Hey Mrs. Hall!  Have you ever seen a typewriter fly?”

The typewriter is launched from the window ledge, precisely on schedule.

Thinking the boys are dropping one of her prized Olivetti typewriters from the window, brings a shocking look of surprise to Mrs. Hall’s face . . . Priceless!


Class of ’74


Photo by Pixabay on

The excitement of high school stands quietly now

All alumni remember, having taken their final bow

Somewhere in the background, singing from above

British vocalist Lulu sings again, “To Sir With Love”


As youth, daydreaming of playing for the Golden Bears

To proudly wear the gold and white with spirit and flair

Gridiron warriors bare their souls and accomplish more

A championship berth misses by a single game’s score


Determined grapplers take down each and every contender

These wrestlers secure gold, no longer seen as pretenders

Teamwork and tenacity deliver wins on the hardwood

Basketball championship arrives, because they could


Daily routines pack every academic day

Lunchtime jukebox in the cafeteria plays

The staff educates with authority and motivation

Always with immense pride and lasting dedication


Like a human compass, Mr. Fox draws a perfect shape

Dressed as a cowboy, Mr. Ensign imparts history’s fate

As dependable as a clock, Mrs. Brush teaches math each day

With surprising humor, Mr. Welchlin makes geology fun to play


Days filled with books, manual typewriters, and slide rules

Never imagining computers that today’s students find cool

Ah, the memories still live for so many after these years

Careers, families, and challenges drive us without fear


The years advance as more gray hair arrives

However, keen minds remain strong and alive

Never forgetting, these high school years stand tall

Filling hearts and minds, memories continue for all


These memories give you a glimpse into my final high school year at Billings West High School.  Yes, it was way back in 1974, now 45 years ago this month.  God has blessed me to remember these events and happenings from long ago.

A year ago at this time, I was leaving the classroom again.  After 40 years as a classroom teacher, activities director, and coach, I was passing on the torch to other colleagues to continue on.  Enjoy a previously published poem that many of you probably missed in Teacher’s Final Day.