This year, a new math teacher, Mr. Connor Toscano, has arrived at Ukiah High.
Before he came to Wildcat Nation, Mr. Toscano did his student teaching in Southern California. He also did tutoring, which inspired him to start teaching in the classroom. He was inspired to teach math because he has a passion for science, engineering, and mathematics.
He decided to teach at Ukiah High because it was his best choice. He described Ukiah High’s culture as “very diverse.”
Mr. Toscano said one of the challenges he has faced this year is catching students up after “taking a backseat” last year during distance learning and not having the knowledge that he expects them to have.
He has observed that some students have a hard time because they actually have to study for their tests, unlike last year where they didn’t have to.
Toscano has his own way of teaching, he told us. He does not use doc cams or PowerPoints. He likes to stand in front of the class and interact with the students. He is not “too serious” with them because he doesn’t want the class to be 90 minutes of just talking and writing. He wants the students and himself to “have some fun.”
11th grader Emily Jackson told us Mr. Toscano “does an amazing job communicating with us and getting the lecture through us.” She added, “with him, it’s not just math, math, math. He treats us like human beings and not some random people he HAS to teach.”
Jackson described Mr. Toscano as “enjoy[ing] us and [he] doesn’t just shut us down the minute we get off-topic. He lets us talk about what we want to talk about and then gets us back on track while still getting through the lesson.
He hopes that students that say they do not actively like or are good at math, in his class, they actually like it and learn it.
For Mr. Toscano, the biggest concern he has right now in his professional career is the fact that he “doesn’t like the short lunches.”