TEACHER TUESDAY BLOG
"The ESD teachers are so welcoming and open to helping you. They want you to succeed."
- a member of the Class of 2017
Check back each week for a new post!
Tolly Salz: Upper School English Teacher
What motivated and inspired you to teach? Every teacher I've ever had -- either in my family or in the classrooms of my youth -- inspired me to teach. While I knew in my gut that I would be involved in some form of teaching, I was headed to law school after graduating from the Plan II Honors Program at UT, deliberately ignoring "the call." Yet the beauty of punctuation, the joy of reading, the power of writing, and my fundamental belief in the potential of others were siren songs all too strong to ignore and still motivate and inspire me to teach and learn every day.
What makes you excited to come to school every day? The mission statement informs my teaching and vision, guiding what I am called to do as an educator at ESD. This dedication to intellectual discovery, to igniting lives of purpose, to bringing out the potential and growth of all who learn here -- coupled with my love of students and colleagues and literature -- energize me to continue growing and learning in a place that cultivates such. Where else could I come to have such an awesome time with such amazing people?
What life lesson do you want your students to learn in your classroom? I want them to know that kindness and compassion matter; that they can conquer anything with a thirst for knowledge and a willingness to listen to others. I hope that one day, they will look at themselves and see what I see in them: pure potential that can transform the world in beautiful, novel, and meaningful ways.
Tell us a fun or interesting fact about yourself! I still keep in touch with my former teachers and former students; I consider them both family. I love sports--watching more than playing them, especially when my children are on the field or court. I enjoy reading books, playing with my dogs and other animals at home, building things with my hands, and spending time with my family (immediate and extended). I often get lost in my own wandering, wondering thoughts and worlds of possible ideas regularly. My favorite color is burnt orange--Hook 'em Horns!
What is your favorite book and why? I simply cannot live without books, without words, without pages and text and ideas and thoughts to nourish all aspects of who I am as an individual. Reading is my great escape, my source of inspiration, therapy, meditation, and knowledge. As I cannot have any one favorite child, I also cannot have any one favorite book; each one nourishes who I am and inspires me to become better in all aspects of my life.
If you could have dinner with three people, alive or not, who would they be? Jane Eyre, Huckleberry Finn, and Scout Finch. Can you imagine how fun that would be?? I'd also make sure that my former dogs, Max and Scout, were there to celebrate with us.
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