Charles Best
Founder, DonorsChoose.org
01:21

Teaching in the Bronx

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The difference of the urban classroom.

Charles Best

Charles Best founded DonorsChoose.org at Wings Academy, a public high school in the Bronx where he was a social studies teacher for five years. He thought up DonorsChoose.org during a lunch conversation with colleagues, and his students volunteered to help start the organization. To entice his fellow teachers to try out the new website, Charles offered them his mother's famous pear dessert. DonorsChoose.org has been growing since.
Transcript

Topic: Teaching in the Bronx

Charles Best: Well, I was lucky enough to go to boarding school, for my high school years, and I had all the resources that I possibly could needed--squash courts and every book you ever would have wanted, every art supply. So when I started teaching in the Bronx I think I was especially able to see the disparity between the resources that my students had and what I had had, when I was in high school. So, that was the first thing that got me thinking about a solution to that situation. But I had some students who where rambunctious, but it was not as tough as, as the media makes it out to be. I had really good relationship with my students, it definitely took me a few months before I had my students respect. I think I got cursed out on my second of teaching, but that was the only time that happened and by the second half of my first year teaching, it did in fact turn out to be, I think, one of the challenging and fun jobs you can have.

 

Recorded on: 1/29/08


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