Teacher of the Month – February 2014 – John Piazza

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9 thoughts on “Teacher of the Month – February 2014 – John Piazza”

    1. Sabrina Sebban_Janczak

      Yes, I met John in Las Vegas as well. He kicks Butts!!!
      Pardon my bad French…

      Congratulation John, I’ve always loved reading your comments on this blog. Eloquence and clarity is how I describe them. Thanks for all your contributions over these last few years.
      Knowing that you do this in Latin is also super impressive.

      Be well…

  1. Kudos to John and the Latin Contingency!! Thank you for your insight, your hard work,and your ability to work and stand together against the opposition.

    with love,

  2. Yes – thank you “Latin-ers” !!! and Congrats John!!!!
    Very often my colleagues say that they would love to learn Latin, that since our local university is doing away with their foreign language programs, then that’s OK….Latin is just that kind of language that is ‘really’ only taught through conjugations and writing and reading anyway. Then I immediately think of all the great Latin teachers on here, and realize that my poor colleagues are missing out on some great collegiality! (and that I would rather learn Latin through CI…that was FUN in Dallas….OPTIME! hahaha)

  3. OMG, I totally missed this post. David M. just today mentioned it to me. First of all, I want to say that I cannot count the number of times this community has helped me through difficulties, either the internal struggles that happen for many of us, especially Latin teachers–that we are not really teaching them anything when we do CI and ditch the scope and sequences established by the textbooks.

    And then there are the external struggles, be it with the students who want to challenge us and push our buttons, and even worse, the decisions made by administrators who do not adequately appreciate what we are doing.

    I am the annonymous Latin teacher whose program got canceled on him, and I am still uncertain as to where (or whether) I’ll be teaching Latin at a school next year. That is a cause of anxiety. But one thing I know is that, regardless of whatever job I have next year (or even if I’m floating), I am confident that I will continue to become a better teacher and educator and mentor and colleague thanks in large part to this PLC.

    I will definitely be at IFLT, and I am looking forward to seeing some of you in person, for another wonderful reunion like a few of us had at NTPRS in Vegas, was it two years ago now?

    Gratias ex corde
    Thanks from the heart


  4. I found John’s work through google search I think. I reached out to him via email for some advice on how to get started in CI and TPRS in my Latin classes. He was very generous with his time and encouraging in giving me the jumpstart I needed to head down the CI road of no return. I haven’t looked back. I pray he finds work soon.

    Joe Justiss

  5. Iohannes, gratulationes maximas tibi!

    I met John in 2009 at the annual American Classical League Institute, in Los Angeles. This is a national convention for Greek and Latin teachers and professors. This was my first time attending an ACL Institute and I knew there were two teachers in particular whom I wanted to meet: John Piazza and Bob Patrick.

    I had been following John and Bob’s work in Latin teaching on their Yahoo group, Latin Best Practices (which I now also help co-moderate), and also on their websites. I was so excited to meet these two teachers, who had already had so much influence on my Latin teaching.

    That was a time in my teaching that I had noticed that so few of my students were able to acquire Latin, and even knowledge about Latin, through the “grammar-translation” method that I was taught in and knew how to teach.

    I followed John and Bob as they were addressing the same disconnect in their own classrooms and experiences, and were seeking a better way. Our thinking and our teaching have greatly changed over those past 6 years (and longer for John and Bob who started this journey before me).

    I am so thankful for these friends, and for the place we find ourselves today on the journey.

    I am indebted to John’s work over the years, his posts, phone conversations with him, and his greater work for the whole Latin teaching community in LBP and beyond.

    John’s honest, fluid and lucid posts about his own experiences in teaching have helped me process changes in my own core principles of teaching and language acquisition. I save John’s posts and go back to them, especially when there is something in them that resonates with me. Oftentimes, they have translated directly into a challenge I have in my own classroom and have helped guide me through a difficult situation or season. John is always able to sift through the meaningless stuff that we have to deal with in teaching, and go to the core, human and visceral parts of our profession and relationships, the stuff that really changes us and our students.

    I appreciate John for his consistent and steadfast dedication to Latin, CI, teaching and friendships. He is always ready with encouraging words with one of our Latin colleagues is going through a tough time and likewise handles his own setbacks with an open, honest, attentive and confident posture. I know that John’s work will be felt through generations of Latin teachers and students.

    gratias plurimas tibi ago, mi amice! -David

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