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The author grew up in the 1960s in working class Medford, Massachusetts, and this memoir is about the high school philosophy teacher that inspired him and changed his life forever I liked the overall message, but the writing is not very good The author rambles A LOT, and the book moves very slowly as a result I had trouble getting through it. This book was great inspiration for anyone who wants to become a teacher espeically if you re male because for once, the book connected to the reader Granted it takes place during the late 1960s and early 1970s so we cannot relate to the problems in society but the reader can connect with the author in the experiences that he has Also, Franklin Lears the teacher is one of the most influential people and one of the best literary characters He makes the kids think for themselves by using off the wall, not by the book teaching techniques a technique that I myself admired greatly This book is great because it not only inspires the reader but it paints an accurate picture of how one ordinary man changed the lives of fifteen people that we see walk the halls of our high school everyday. I have heard Professor Edmundson speak several times with pleasure and read another of his books Why Read As a retired teacher myself, I m always drawn to books about teaching, teachers and learning This one surprised me The title seems quite clear but the book is an account of a less than inspiring working class high school, a working class family and a senior with little love for learning and few dreams for his future living in the late 60s in the U.S where accepted values were being challenged.I stayed with Professor Edmundson and was drawn into this account of his intellectual coming of age so radically that he was catapulted into a new life, away from his family, his school friends and all he had previously known, thanks to a young, inexperienced and iconoclastic teacher I would have liked to know about Lears but it is quite probable that Edmundson himself didn t know much about him except the effect of the books Lears introduced him to and the confidence Lears gave his young student in his ability to comprehend and learn from them and in their value to help a young man change his life You don t expect an established Professor of English in a major university to have come from such a background You don t expect such a life changing teacher to leave after just one year and change his life and career path so completely So, though it wasn t the book I was expecting to read, it was a very good book and it enriched me. I really enjoyed this book At first I was a bit disappointed that there wasn t about the teacher that Edmundson sets out to honor, and it took me a while to get into the book But in the end, I really got absorbed I like books that are set in the 60 s, and I like to read different points of view about the war and the protesters and the hippies This was a pretty good memoir of that time as judged by me, who wasn t even born then what it was like to be a normal, slightly confused, mostly disinterested high schooler during a really tumultuous time I also loved the author s description of his relationship with his father, especially their time watching Johnny Carson together His father was a smart, tough, not entirely easy man, and his discreet shows of affection for his son were really moving I loved the part of the book where Edmundson discovers the love of reading there s a really great scene where he and his friends go out for an evening of drinking, and he is so absorbed in The Autobiography of Malcolm X that he brings the book with him His friends eventually drop him off at his house because he s so involved in the book that he s not paying any attention to them And then he goes inside and keeps reading I admire the courage of a high school jock who is willing to be seen as a newly minted bookworm. I didn t like it as much as I d expected to I was kind of left flat.I wish there had been much about the teacher, Mr Lears, because that s what the book was about While I did enjoy, to an extent, the other characters, I thought there wasn t enough of why Mr Lears was a great teacherjust a few incidents I also thought it got a tad too descriptive and language heavy at times But hey.the guy s a college professor, and most of my college professors got pretty wordy from time to time Overall, not a bad book Just not what I d hoped. Up front I highly disliked this book To be fair in general I don t enjoy memoirs, but this one seemed particularly tedious I found the story rambling weighed down by tedious details and superfluous metaphors While many of them were interesting, when there are a dozen within a page it becomes harder to appreciate them As someone training to be a teacher, I did not find this inspiring or educational but terribly depressing As a student, I found this to be a poor example of high school even though Edmundson seems to think his experience is typical. I enjoyed another book by Edmundson called Why Read, which gives an indepth perspective on what he believes about teaching, reading, and our culture we need to live out the truth of literature Teacher was very different because it is written as a memoir rather than as an academic essay I found it difficult at times to maintain my commitment to it it is slow and Edmundson does not discuss Frank Lears as much as I thought he would Edmundson is interested in portraying the change which he underwent, which is a great idea in theory. I went into reading this book as others did, as evidenced by the message board, I wanted to find some tips about teaching Although I did learn a lot and loved to learn about Mr Lears I thought that the book was kind of misleading Hidden, and not very well at that, is the author s desire to write a memoir about himself in that year entirely separate from the classroom Unfortunately, this mix didn t benefit the book but the rest, the in between was great. Recommended to me by the headmaster of the new school where I will be teaching starting in August There are some interesting connections here the author grew up in Malden and Medford, just one town over from where I live and have lived for the past 9 years he also went to Bennington Me too The book is a memoir about the author s experience of a philosophy class taught by an inspiring, but mostly very alien and nonconformist teacher in his senior year at Medford High School.I have to say, I found the prose style of Edmundson kind of inflated At times there is too much description every person s facial structure, typical clothing, and parentage is relayed, and even though some of it is genuinely entertaining, it s done too much to really focus well on There is a lot about football that I found confusing and totally non interesting The main story is engaging, but slow to get going, and I suspect it is quite simplified As a teacher, I wanted to hear about the teaching However, the point of this book is to recognize the power of Edmundson s experience, and therefore it s told through his eyes The message is that teachers can actually open up the world and new ways of thinking to their students, and don t have to stand on desks or invite students to their houses to do this Providing provocative resources, encouraging conversation, and modeling openness, skepticism, and critical thinking can revolutionize an adolescent s thinking I appreciate that. `FREE BOOK ⇯ Teacher: The One Who Made the Difference ⇪ In , Mark Edmundson was a typical high school senior in working class Medford, Massachusetts He loved football, disdained schoolwork, and seemed headed for a factory job in his hometown until a maverick philosophy teacher turned his life aroundWhen Frank Lears, a small, nervous man wearing a moth eaten suit, arrived at Medford fresh from Harvard University, his students pegged him as an easy target Lears was unfazed by their spitballs and classroom antics He shook things up, trading tired textbooks for Kesey and Camus, and provoking his class with questions about authority, conformity, civil rights, and the Vietnam War He rearranged seats and joined in a ferocious snowball fight with Edmundson and his football crew Lears s impassioned attempts to get these kids to think for themselves provided Mark Edmundson with exactly the push he needed to break away from the lockstep life of Medford High Written with verve and candor, Teacher is Edmundson s heartfelt tribute to the man who changed the course of his life