Remembering Miss Mullens
October 7, 2011
Posted by on
It’s Ada Lovelace Day and we are encouraged to write about women who were significant in getting us involved in Science and Technology.
I remember my Junior High Geometry teacher, Miss Mullens. She was very, very short, kind of shy, but very funny — a classic geek, really, now that I think of it (geek, of course, being a term of praise here, not a negative thing).
Junior High school geometry, for me, was mostly about learning to do proofs — classic Elements of Euclid stuff. This was in the heyday of the “new math” movement, and I think — although this is a long time ago — that they emphasized thought processes over rote memorization. And I loved doing proofs, getting them right. I know I got a “A+” in the class. It was a great encouragement to me. I must have had this class in grade 9, because I didn’t do well in Algebra (8th grade) until the teacher — Mr Perkins — called me out on my laziness. Mr Perkins actually had a paddle and used it on students (this was in the late 60s). Miss Mullens was too small for that of course — but I would have done anything for her; her praise was enough.
Alas, I doubt if she’ll read these words — perhaps, even, her name was Mullins, or Mullen. It’s been a long time. But she was a great teacher, and I remember her fondly.