Teachers of FHCI: Mr. Berger

If you weren’t a teacher, what do you think you would be?

“I gave some real thought to being a lawyer for a while, and I also thought about being a professor and haven’t entirely dismissed that as a possibility maybe sometime down the road.”

What do you want to do after retirement?

“It would be nice to go down to the faculty of education and teach new teachers sometime in the future.”

What are some hobbies you have outside of the classroom?

“As an English teacher, it’s probably not going to be a great surprise that I’m a big reader. I’m also a cyclist and used to compete actually. I still do it[su_members message=”If you would like to read the rest of this interview, please %login%. It only takes a minute and is 100% secure.” color=”#4bb8fc” login_text=”create an account” login_url=”https://fhcigoldenfalcon.com/register” class=””] a lot in the summer and enjoy it.”

Do you have any memorable trips/vacations in the past?

“I’ve done so much travelling that there isn’t one in particular that sticks out, but between high school and University, I lived in London for almost five years, during which time I did do a lot of travelling. It is the one city in the world that every once in a while I’ll get sort of a hankering for. I haven’t been there for about four years now — I was actually thinking of going back in the summer.”

Did you pick up an accent?

“It’s interesting — I was in a band and we travelled around a lot, so I was constantly around guys with very thick accents, and when I would come home, people would say, ‘What’s with that pretentious accent?’ and I wouldn’t even hear it.

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Couples of FHCI – Ms. Monaghan and Mr. Dinsmore

By Danielle Westreich, Jessica Huong, Jessica Bensky and Esther Eisen

How long have you been together?

Mr. Dinsmore: “7 or 8 years.”

What were your first impressions of each other? 

Ms. Monaghan: “Short with a good taste in music.”

Mr. Dinsmore: “Tall and very [restrict] smiley.”

What is your favourite date place? 

Mr. Dinsmore: “Any nice restaurant.”

Where was your first date? 

Ms. Monaghan: “We hung out as friends a lot before an official date. Our first official date was at a restaurant called Paradis.”

Describe each other using one word. 

Ms. Monaghan: “Awesome.”

Mr. Dinsmore: “Fun.”

What are your biggest pet peeves about each other?

Ms. Monaghan: “Underplanning.”

Mr. Dinsmore: “Overplanning.”

What are your plans this Valentine’s Day?

Ms. Monaghan: “We don’t buy into consumerism.”

Mr. Dinsmore: “We do have family day weekend plans, though. We’re going skiing with Mr. Naylor’s family and Mr. Kleiman’s family.”

What do you love most about each other?

Ms. Monaghan: “To sum it all up: I love how caring, loving, intelligent and fun he is, contrary to popular belief.”

Mr. Dinsmore: “I would agree with all of those things. Also, just everything we do together is just really enjoyable.”

Do you have a favourite pastime?

Ms. Monaghan: “Cottaging, recreational sports and board games, specifically Ticket to Ride and Wizard (the card game).”

Who does your daughter, Lola, love more?

Mr. Dinsmore:  “Her (Ms. Monaghan]. I’m winning her over a little bit but she had a year with her.”

How did you pick the name ‘Lola’ for your daughter?

Ms. Monaghan: She was nameless for 2 days as we were trying to decide on a name. My mom suggested it at one point and it just stuck in my head.

Which TV shows do you watch together?

Mr. Dinsmore:  “Game of Thrones, Silicone Valley, basically anything on HBO.”

Who is the more competitive one? 

Mr. Dinsmore:  “Probably me.” 

Ms. Monaghan: “I think you can be very competitive, but in my mind I’m more competitive. I hate losing but I wouldn’t throw a tantrum or anything.”

At what point did you realize that this could be long-term? 

Ms. Monaghan: “Maybe when we moved in together or… when we had a child together.”

Mr. Dinsmore:  “Having been through renovations together, it confirmed that we could get through anything together.”

Do you have any interesting stories? 

Ms. Monaghan: “We were robbed at knifepoint in Panama.” 

What is the key to a successful relationship? 

Mr. Dinsmore: “Just take care of each other.”


Humans of FHCI is a popular column of The Golden Falcon Newspaper. Explore more student and teacher interviews here.

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Ms Burnip – Teachers of FHCI: Before We Knew Them

By Kana Ogawa and Sapna Humar

When we look at teachers of FHCI, it is hard to picture them doing anything other than being in the classroom, and teaching us school related things.  However, as surprising as it may sound, some teachers have had previous occupations, before they became what we know them as today. Here are some of our great teachers, and their jobs before FHCI.

Did you have any occupations before you became a teacher?

“Yes! I always wanted to go into teaching… actually that’s not true. I wanted to be a doctor for a while. And then in Grade 10 I thought, I’m going to teach, because I definitely love school. But before that, I had to do a lot of different jobs. I didn’t have a wealthy family or a wealthy background so I had to earn money for university and/or do well in school to get a scholarship. What I did do, as my first job was working at a gas station, where I pumped gas and cleaned windshields. And after that, I worked for a funeral home, where I was a receptionist. It was a pretty interesting job. I also worked at a golf club! I was a course marshal, and ticket taker. I worked at Taco Bell, my worst job ever … I couldn’t stand it! I was placed on the drive through, and it was actually the hardest job I ever did.  I also was a teacher’s assistant for Costume Design and Shop at the University of Guelf when I was in my undergrad.

After these jobs, what motivated you to become a teacher?

“I did a stint called Second Job Employment. Youth who were not doing well in school would come to this workshop. That was in my fourth year university before I went to teacher’s college. I learned how to work with people, as well as kids who don’t like school and aren’t doing as well in school, so that was a great transition job. Taco Bell didn’t teach me anything, other than that you have to work hard, and that some people are unthankful. And lots of times when you’re teaching, it’s a thankful task, but it can be a thankless task too. Doing things, you won’t normally do and putting yourself out there are all the reasons why I do all these jobs. I need make money, I want to experience stuff, and I like to live life in the moment, so I said OK, why not?

Do you like teaching?

I love it, especially working here at this school. Before I came to FHCI, I’ve spent 19 years at another school, and before that I was even more bored. Being in someplace for 19 years, it is very difficult to say, I’m going to switch schools! But I am happy I was able to, and I was so lucky to have landed at FHCI. It really rejuvenated my energy and made me so happy, to just have a whole new change in scenery and a new student body to work with. It’s been so amazing, and so, of course I love being a teacher.”

Mr Oosterhoff – Teachers of FHCI: Before We Knew Them

By Kana Ogawa and Sapna Humar

When we look at teachers of FHCI, it is hard to picture them doing anything other than being in the classroom, and teaching us school related things.  However, as surprising as it may sound, some teachers have had previous occupations, before they became what we know them as today. Here are some of our great teachers, and their jobs before FHCI.

Did you do any work before becoming a teacher?

“I worked in Japan for a little. I also had a lot of part time jobs. I worked at a convenience store, where I sold everything from candy to magazines to cigarettes… it was terrible. Before that, I worked at a library.”

In Toronto?

“No, in London Ontario, where I grew up. I liked it there when I was young, but not once I became old enough to realize that it had a very small-town super white mentality for a city that really shouldn’t have had.”

Did you work at any other schools before FHCI?

“No.  I got hired here 13 years ago… a long time. I taught ESL, I taught English, I taught S.A.P, a little bit of History, and Civics and Careers. It’s my first year as a guidance counsellor, hopefully not the last. I definitely love it. It’s a very different set of challenges.”

Mr Moore – Teachers of FHCI: Before We Knew Them

By Kana Ogawa and Sapna Humar

When we look at teachers of FHCI, it is hard to picture them doing anything other than being in the classroom, and teaching us school related things.  However, as surprising as it may sound, some teachers have had previous occupations, before they became what we know them as today. Here are some of our great teachers, and their jobs before FHCI.

Did you have a different job before becoming a teacher?

“Yes, I didn’t actually become a teacher until I was in my thirties. Before that, I worked as a news photographer. I also worked as a public relations consultant.”

Did you work for any particular newspaper?

“No, I was mostly freelance, but there’s a photo agency that I worked for called “Getty Images”. Once a while, someone buys but very rarely.”

Did you enjoy any of these particular jobs?

“I did, I enjoyed both of them. I didn’t work on a regular enough basis for me to afford to have a family in Toronto, so once I had a son, I started paying attention to education because he was going to be involved in it as he grew older. So, I started looking for a new career. I thought teaching might work out, and it has.”

Ms​ Matte – Teachers of FHCI: Before We Knew Them

By Kana Ogawa and Sapna Humar

When we look at teachers of FHCI, it is hard to picture them doing anything other than being in the classroom, and teaching us school related things.  However, as surprising as it may sound, some teachers have had previous occupations, before they became what we know them as today. Here are some of our great teachers, and their jobs before FHCI.

What did you do before you came to Forest Hill?

“I worked at York Mills Collegiate before, where I did Math and English. I had part-time jobs, but it was just working at retail, at Fairweather.”

What has your experience with FHCI been like?

“I’ve been here since 2005. My first year here, I did Careers, English, and Math. I’ve always enjoyed teaching math in particular.”

Do you enjoy working here?

“Love it. We have a very good department.”

Ms​ Haines – Teachers of FHCI: Before We Knew Them

By Kana Ogawa and Sapna Humar

When we look at teachers of FHCI, it is hard to picture them doing anything other than being in the classroom, and teaching us school related things.  However, as surprising as it may sound, some teachers have had previous occupations, before they became what we know them as today. Here are some of our great teachers, and their jobs before FHCI.

Were you anything before you were a teacher?

 “I taught English in Korea for a year… it was really cool. I also worked as an educational assistant, with students with autism. And I was a waitress in a bar… that’s where I got my education. Before I taught here, I taught at Downsview, Birchmount Park, and Woburn.”

Do you like working here?

“Yeah I do, I really like this school. I think the kids are great, it’s a beautiful building, and there’s a lot going on at this school that gets me excited, like a lot of clubs. I love the staff and I love the students, so I am very happy here.”

Teachers of FHCI: Mr. MacDonald

What is one thing most people don’t know about you? 

“I dabble in oil painting. But I only dabble in it; I’m not very good at it. I can also carve a sick pumpkin!”

If you weren’t a teacher, what would you be? 
“I would probably be working a desk job, doing something really boring like filing. My dream job would be a river raft guide in The Northern Woods.”
 
What’s your favourite thing about being a teacher?
“I really enjoy coming in every day and having one-on-one time with students in our own space. I like the discussions we have, the ideas we have. I like the creativity I see coming from the students. I learn something every day!.”
 
What’s your least favourite thing about being a teacher?
“I don’t like whining.”
 
What’s one tradition you’ve kept throughout your teaching career? 
“We play Jeopardy every day. I started this tradition on my very first period of teaching. I found a Jeopardy calendar in my desk drawer and that just kick-started the whole thing.”

FHCI’s Best Dressed: Halloween Edition

By Befftwo Ali

On this spooky holiday, Forest Hill was filled with spirit! Here are some of the highlights:

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The magical Ms Jephcott dressed as a Hogwarts student from the iconic Harry Potter franchise.

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Jori, Paige and Izabel dressed up as middle school slumber party girls, and we’re here for it.[restrict]

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Probably one of the most terrifying costume yet (minus Winnie) so far. Amelia, Sage, Tianna, Krystael, Rebekah and Trisha all posed up as the cast from the Purge.

 

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Ms Newman looked aesthetically pleasing today with her pop art makeup inspired by Roy Litchenstein.

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We also have the lovely Ms. Burnip dressed as one of the monsters from Where the Wild Things Are.

 

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Last, but certainly not least, we have Evelyn dressed up as our former principal, Peggy Aitchison.

 


To view more costumes, browse through the FHCI Photo Stream. Have a spooky Halloween falcons!

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Humans of FHCI – Mr​ Ferroni

What is one thing most people don’t know about you?

“I used to be an Auxiliary police constable with the Toronto Police.”

If you weren’t a teacher, what would you be?

“I would be a criminal lawyer.”

What’s your favourite thing about being a teacher?

“Bringing people closer to the truth, just like in Plato’s Allegory of The Cave.”

What’s your least favourite thing about being a teacher?

“When people try to lead others away from the truth.”

Humans of FHCI – Mr. MacDonald

By Esther Eisen and Abi Parameswaran

 

unnamedWhat is one thing most people don’t know about you? 

“I dabble in oil painting. But I only dabble in it; I’m not very good at it. I can also carve a sick pumpkin!”

If you weren’t a teacher, what would you be? 
“I would probably be working a desk job, doing something really boring like filing. My dream job would be a river raft guide in The Northern Woods.”
 
What’s your favourite thing about being a teacher?
“I really enjoy coming in every day and having one-on-one time with students in our own space. I like the discussions we have, the ideas we have. I like the creativity I see coming from the students. I learn something every day!”
 
What’s your least favourite thing about being a teacher?
“I don’t like whining.”
 
What’s one tradition you’ve kept throughout your teaching career? 
“We play Jeopardy every day. I started this tradition on my very first period of teaching. I found a Jeopardy calendar in my desk drawer and that just kick started the whole thing.”

Can you Guess Which FHCI Teacher Said This?

How well can you correctly match the quote to the teacher?

An Interview with Ms. Roca

By: Rachel Nirenberg

Q: What do you want people to take away from the Storm 3?

A: After experiencing Storm 3, I trust the audience will leave the theatre armed with a bounty of questions.  The objective of theatre is to address questions, not to answer them.  I should hope that students will stir up a vortex of discussion.

Q: How does this year’s play compare to previous years’? What makes it unique?

A: 2016 has been a most difficult year globally.  Citizens of the world have been assaulted by a cacophony of insults, horrific slurs, personal and public attacks, a dangerous rise in nationalistic posturing against the backdrop of an election for the most powerful public office on the planet.  We grieve.  The headless leader has returned.  The past is present.

Q: What are you most excited for the school to see?

A: I am always excited to share in a suspension of disbelief. It is magic.

Q: Can you talk about the process? How do you go from absolutely nothing to a completed product?

A: Hard, hard work.

Q: If you could describe the Storm 3: Cacophony in only three words, which words would you use?

A: 1984 BIG BROTHER

Interview with Mr. Kleiman

The following interview was conducted by Ahad Ali, Magomed Evloev, and Roberto Giacomini in association with the Golden Falcon Newspaper.

The members of the Golden Falcon had a chance to interview Mr. Kleiman on his last day of the year. 

Most of you probably know Mr. Kleiman, either from having him as a teacher or from having him barge into your class in the middle of a lesson, start telling corny science puns, and then run away to another classroom to repeat the joke. So, to the grade nines who will meet him next year or to the grade twelves who miss the punniest biology teacher in school, here are a few things you might want to know about him.

Like any students interviewing a teacher, we asked the basic questions first.

Student: What inspired you to become a teacher?

Mr. Kleiman: I’ve always wanted to be a teacher since I was 10 years old. I just loved it. When I was ten, I thought it was about explaining things to other people. And I’m good at explaining things. And then I grew up and realized that teaching was about who I am. I get a captive audience that I can brainwash with all the things that I find most important in my life.

Student: If you weren’t a teacher, what would you have become?

Mr. Kleiman: If I wasn’t a teacher, I probably would have gone into engineering. My dad was an engineer. My grandfather was an engineer. There was a time in high school when I thought I was going to be an engineer. Then, I snapped out of it and realized that I’m a teacher.

Student: Has biology and science changed as a subject since you studied it?

Mr. Kleiman: At a high school level, what we’re teaching here is fundamentals. What I think high school is ultimately about is making sure that every single person who is an adult in society is exposed to the same base of knowledge. Very little has changed in the way of content, but the world has changed. It’s 2016; there is technology now. What is happening in the world of professional biology is unrecognizable today from when I was in high school. It’s exciting! I truly believe that we are entering the age of biology. We have tried to solve problems in the past by trying to understand physics better. That did a lot of stuff, thanks to Einstein. We then moved on to trying to solve every problem in the world with chemistry. That’s been a disaster, sorry chemists. And now we are finally looking at the biologist’s answers. We’re looking at ecology and we are looking at genetics to try and solve world issues. It’s really fascinating.

The next questions we asked because why not?

Student: Do you think that biology will one day stop people from aging and dying in general?

Mr. Kleiman: I hope not. I think that aging and dying are a very important part of being alive and I think that that time limit we have forces us to use what we have to its fullest. I don’t want to live forever and I hope you don’t either. My goal is to live well, not forever.

Student: What is your best science pun or joke?

Mr. Kleiman: Ask your father. Whatever your father’s is, it’s probably mine.

I personally expected a cringeworthy but kind of funny pun that he had been saving up for a grand finale of some sort. To continue with the interview, we asked questions about him.

Student: What was your least and most favourite subject in high school, besides biology?

Mr. Kleiman: I loved everything. I am a huge nerd. I am the biggest nerd you will ever met. I truly believe that there is something fascinating about every single topic in school and I know that somebody, somewhere is dedicating their life to studying every subject ever. In high school, I was a sponge and I still am today. I can’t stop learning.

Student: What does it feel like knowing that you’re going to become a father now. Scared?

Mr. Kleiman: No. This is what my entire life has been leading to. I love teaching, and I’m ready to start teaching my own kids. It is the greatest journey that you can possibly be on. My wife and I have been so eager to start our family ever since we met each other, even before we got married. We wanted to have a family together. This is the best thing that has ever happened to me, period.

Student: Are you going to bombard your kids with jokes like you did with us? 

Mr. Kleiman: Do children ever have a choice with that? Of course. But my main job as a parent isn’t to make them laugh, it’s to embarrass my kids. The number one role for any parent is to make their child really, deeply embarrassed. My goal is make my kid’s life harder for them so they learn how to face adversity and just be ridiculous.

Student: What’s your most fond memory of Forest Hill Collegiate? 

Mr. Kleiman: My most fond memory of Forest Hill is the people that I work with. The people in my science department are more than just colleagues. I work with my closest personal friends. Coming to work every day to your best friends that you respect deeply; that’s my favourite thing about Forest Hill. A really close second is having the opportunity to teach biology. I’m alive when I come to work because I get the privilege of sharing with you what is the most fascinating stuff in the world in my opinion. 

Student: Who do you think is the best teacher in the science department?

Mr. Kleiman: Oh, god, if I say that in a newspaper I’m done. I have an opinion about it. But here’s my actual answer to that: it’s something that Mr. Naylor taught me. Mr. Naylor said we need Kleimans and we need Naylors. That’s stuck with me. There isn’t a best teacher. Teaching is an art, and just like there is no greatest artist in the world, there is no greatest teacher. Everyone needs a different style and what people need is a variety of teachers. So I know who has my favourite teaching style. But as far as the best, it doesn’t exist. 

Student: Since this is your last year with us grade twelves and you won’t be seeing us graduate, what do you want us to remember you by?

Mr. Kleiman: Oh man. I’ve been teaching so long. In my grade 12 bio class, I’ve been teaching half those people since grade 9. Number 1: I’m proud of the people you guys are becoming. It’s beautiful to watch you grow up. What do I want you to remember me by? God, I’m not dying. I’ll be back. I’ll be visiting.

Student: We won’t be able to see you that much, so what do you want us to remember you by? Like, the guy who made puns, the guy who’s enthusiastic about science, or just a bio teacher?

Mr. Kleiman: No, I want people to be passionate about what they do and to be kind human beings that are guided with a moral compass. Put ethics before everything else. Do what’s right.

So there you have it: a brief interview with Mr. Kleiman. Most of you are wondering: well, what was the point of this interview? He’ll be back next year; we can talk to him then. Well, the answer is: because we can and we did. In actuality, it’s to show you what is in store for you if you continue to take biology and have the chance to have Mr. Kleiman as a teacher. He is a man that truly loves what he is teaching. He will make you enjoy biology whether you like it or not. Additionally, he will make you laugh with his puns and might even inspire you to be a better person. Finally, from to the grade nines entering this or year to the great twelves leaving, Mr. Kleiman has one important thing to say to you: “Live like you have no limits.” In other words, don’t let anyone, even yourself, stop you from getting what you want. Frisbee is looking for new members, mostly girls, so we can continue the historic campaign that Kleiman started last year.

Humans of FHCI – Ms. Monaghan

Ms. Monaghan

Biology and Science Teacher

By Andi Mayer-Goodman

“Why did you become a teacher?”

“Growing up I taught swimming and I really enjoyed it. A natural crossover was to become a teacher. My degree was in biology, and that is how I ended up becoming a biology teacher.” Continue reading “Humans of FHCI – Ms. Monaghan”

Exclusive Day of Pink Interview: Ms. Campbell

Although FHCI is notorious for lacking spirit, there is one day each year that unites our school and brings out the spirit of each student and faculty member. This day is known as Day of Pink: the international day against bullying, discrimination, homophobia, transphobia, and transmisogyny. The Golden Falcon was fortunate enough to do an exclusive interview with Ms. Campbell, the backbone of FHCI’s Day of Pink, where she divulges what Day of Pink means to her and shares information about this year’s upcoming Day of Pink.

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The Golden Falcon: How did you get involved with Day of Pink?

Ms Campbell: I joined the Mental Health Committee who was taking on Day of Pink. Mental health is something I’ve always been really passionate about, as well as Day of Pink, so it was a natural fit for me.

TGF: Knowing that our school isn’t incredibly spirited, how does it make you feel to see our school go all out for Day of Pink?

Ms. Campbell: I feel really proud of the dedication of not only the people who have been involved in planning this year’s Day of Pink, but also about the amazing participation of all the staff and the students who have supported such an important cause. I know that this year everyone’s going to be just as spirited and supportive about the cause.

TGF: How will this year’s Day of Pink differ from last year’s?

Ms. Campbell: This year, Day of Pink’s super club has decided that each member of our school community will sign a pledge for peace at FHCI. Each pledge has a different anti-bullying message. We will be building an enormous rainbow pathway in the main foyer, which we are calling, “The Pathway to Peace”. The idea is that each one of our pledges is a stepping-stone on the pathway to peace at FHCI. The pathway will be up for the remainder of the year to remind all of us about our commitment to stand in solidarity against bullying. Last year, the balloons were up and they lasted for a week. This year, we wanted something that would last for the full year to make a bigger impact on our everyday lives.

TGF: How is Day of Pink’s message meaningful to you?

Ms. Campbell: As a teacher, I have always been an advocate for those who have been bullied. I also believe that we should all stand up together to fight against bullying, but also to raise awareness about all forms of bullying, specifically among the LGBTQ community. It’s also meaningful to me because I think it sends a message, especially here with everyone participating, that we are all standing up together.

TGF: What is one message you want students to remember from Day of Pink?

Ms. Campbell: I want students to remember that bullying does happen. It happens to many students and many people all around the world. The effects of bullying can be both devastating and profound. Every staff, student and person needs to raise awareness and take a stand against homophobic and transphobic bullying.

Get excited, Forest Hill! The Day of Pink is on April 13th, so don’t forget to wear pink to show your support!

Looking Back with Ms. Doan

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Ms. Doan, former FHCI teacher

Interviewed by: Hivda Ates

What may come as a surprise to those who have had Ms. Doan as a supply is that she’s a former drama and English teacher at Forest Hill, having started in September of 1985. Accordingly, I took advantage of an opportunity to learn more about our school’s past through the firsthand experiences of someone who is a great part of it.

Continue reading “Looking Back with Ms. Doan”