Clayton Brough: The Teacher and the Television Weatherman

$RKZAZ3VVery often gifted teachers earn recognition in fields other than education. One such teacher is Robert Clayton Brough, a retired middle school teacher who is also well known as a climatologist and television personality. Known widely as Clayton Brough, he is probably best known for his position as a long-time weatherman of ABC4 in Salt Lake City, Utah, a position he held for twenty-eight years. He also worked on the weather team at CBS2.

Clayton was born in Los Angeles, California, on May 29, 1950. As a youngster, he was a longtime member of the Boy Scouts of America. In 1967 Clayton was selected by his district to report on the status of Scouting in America to President Lyndon Johnson. After his high school graduation, Clayton enrolled in Brigham Young University, where he earned his bachelor’s degree in 1974 and his master’s degree in 1975, both in the field of geography.

During the years he worked as an on-air weatherman, Clayton also taught science, geography, and journalism in middle school. His first teaching assignment was at Springville Junior High in 1975 in Springville, Utah, where he worked between 1975 and 1978. Between 1978 and 1984, Clayton took a break from teaching, returning to the profession to teach at Springville in 1984. In 1986,  he transferred to Eisenhower Junior High in Taylorsville, Utah. Clayton has also served as an adjunct instructor of geography at Brigham Young University starting in 1989 and at the University of Utah  beginning in 2005. He has also written scientific articles and doctrinal books for the Mormon Church.

This gifted educator retired from his thirty-one-year career in the teaching profession in 2012.

Chalkboard Champion Joe Colone: The Gifted Athlete Who Became the Consumate Coach

39190638_129470986447[1][1]Many acomplished athletes go on to become exceptional educators once they leave their careers in professional sports. One such athlete is Joseph F. Colone, a professional basketball player who once played for the New York Knicks.

Joe Colone was born in Berwick, Pennsylvania, on January 23, 1924. He attended Berwick High School in Berwick, Pennsylvania, where he established a reputation as a gifted athlete. Upon his high school graduation, he enrolled in Bloomsburg State Teachers College, now known as Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania, where he also played basketball. After college graduation, Joe was not drafted into the NBA, but he still managed to make the Knicks’ roster for the 1948-1949 season.  At 6 feet 5 inches tall and 210 pounds, Joe played the forward position. He played for only one season, but during that season he appeared in 15 games and averaged 5.5 points.

After his brief career in the NBA, Joe moved to Woodbury, New Jersey, and accepted a teaching position at Woodbury Junior/Senior High School, where he taught from 1954 to 1986. There he served as an assistant coach for both the basketball and the football teams, and the head coach for the golf team. While at Woodbury, Joseph mentored rising basketball star Dave Budd, who later went on to play for Wake Forest University and then for the New York Knicks.

As a teacher and coach, Joe was described as genuinely nice, fun-loving, and family-oriented. Those who knew him said he had a passion for the art of teaching and a knack for motivating all his kids to do well. “Joe meant everything to me,” former student Dave Budd said in an interview published in in 2009. “Without him, I’d never have gotten a scholarship to Wake Forest. Without him, I doubt I’d ever have gotten to the NBA. He gave me direction, helped me with my temper. Joe was a major person in my life and we remained close over all these years. On the court and off the court, Joe helped many young people in Woodbury.”

Joseph Colone, chalkboard champion and professional basketball player, passed away on July 1, 2009, at the age of 85.

Norma Elizabeth Boyd: Amazing Educator and Children’s Rights Advocate

$R3WXGBQAs is so often the case, many educators distinguish themselves in areas outside the field of education. Norma Elizabeth Boyd is one such teacher. Norma was an educator in public schools in the Washington, DC, area for over thirty years. She was known for creating real-world experiences for her students. One example of this is that she frequently escorted her classes to Congressional hearings to learn about the political process. To help educate her students, one year Norma financed their field trip to the General Assembly of the United Nations in New York City.

Norma was born in 1888 in Washington, DC, and was educated in public schools there. A graduate of Howard University, this amazing woman was one of sixteen founders of Alpha Kappa Alpha, the first sorority established by African American students.She earned her bachelor’s degree in mathematics in 1910.

Throughout her life, Norma was active in a variety of political endeavors. In 1934, she raised money to support the Mississippi Health Project, and in 1938, Norma established the Non-Partisan Lobby for Economic and Democratic Rights, an organization which lobbied Congress about issues related to education, voting rights, and public service. In 1939, Norma was named a United Nations observer. She represented the United States on several committees, as well as at an international conference held in Brazil. As a UN observer, Boyd was dedicated to children’s rights and supported Principle 10 of the Declaration of Human Rights.
During World War II, Norma chaired two conferences at Howard University to support the war effort. In addition, Norma lobbied the United Nations, government agencies such as the Department of State, and nationally-recognized educational, scientific, and cultural organizations in an effort to focus attention on the need for integration. In 1948, the National Council of Negro Woman selected Norma as their Woman of the Year in the Field of Legislation for her role in establishing and leading the Non-Partisan Council. That same year, Norma retired from teaching.

Norma’s dedication to students continued into her later years. In 1959, she established the Women’s International Religious Fellowship. This organization, which consisted of women from diverse backgrounds and cultures, helped to draw attention to children’s safety and rights.

Norma Elizabeth Boyd, a true chalkboard champion, passed away in Washington, D.C. on January 4, 1985.

National Teachers Hall of Fame Plans Memorial for Fallen Teachers

TeacherAppleTN1[1]The National Teachers Hall of Fame is currently raising money to pay for the construction of a memorial to fallen educators to be located on the campus of Emporia State University in Emporia, Kansas. The planned monument will be 10′ by 10′, composed of black granite, and contain a walkway, benches, illumination, and landscaping. The memorial is intended to be a permanent tribute to school personnel who have given their lives while protecting their students. Thus far, the names of fifty teachers are earmarked for inscription in the framed book that will also be part of the memorial. Groundbreaking for the project was  held on June 13, and dedication ceremonies are scheduled for this fall. Anyone wishing to make a contribution to the construction of this monument can send their donation to NTHF, 1200 Commercial St., Box 4017, Emporia, Kansas, 66801. To check out the web site for National Teachers Hall of Fame, click on this link: NTHF.

Remembering Christa McAuliffe: The First Teacher in Space

$ROLQWTAWithout a doubt, one of the saddest days of my teaching career was the day our nation lost the first educator to go into space, New Hampshire history teacher Christa McAuliffe. Fairly new to the profession, I was so proud that a fellow teacher had been selected as the first civilian in space, and a little star-struck by the professionalism, intelligence, and infectious enthusiasm of the chosen candidate, selected from among 11,000 other highly-qualified applicants.
While on her mission, Christa planned to write a journal of her experiences as an astronaut from the perspective that even an ordinary citizen can take center stage in the making of history. She was to have been the perfect example of that. Additionally, she was scheduled to perform lessons and simple scientific experiments aboard the space shuttle which would be viewed by students in classrooms all over America.
Tragically, Christa was one of seven astronauts killed when the space shuttle Challenger exploded on January 28, 1986, just 73 seconds after lift-off. The journal she never got to finish was replaced by A Journal for Christa: Christa McAuliffe, Teacher in Space, written by Grace George Corrigan, Christa’s grief-stricken mother. The book is a tender tribute to an extraordinary teacher.A Journal for Christa can be ordered form amazon. I have also included a chapter about Christa McAuliffe in the book I am currently writing, tentatively entitled Chalkboard Heroes.