By Beryl Rosenberg
This fall, Oyster Bay High School welcomed a new physical education teacher, Mr. Geiger. Mr. Geiger is excited to be teaching here at OBHS, and he is passionate about making connections with students and staff who are happy to meet and welcome him into the OBHS community. Mr. Geiger kindly participated in a Q&A.
Did you always know you wanted to have a career in education?
“For as long as I can remember, I knew I wanted to work in education. My family is filled with educators, so growing up, school always was the main priority. During every holiday and social gathering, the conversations were always centered around teaching and what was happening in their schools. This ignited my passion for teaching at such a young age.”
Why did you choose to be a physical education teacher?
“I chose to be a physical education teacher for many different reasons. The first was that, growing up, I was always active. After school I would find myself participating in organized sports, riding my bike or just playing outside. When athletics became a little more competitive at the high school level, I really focused on basketball and soccer. I was even lucky enough to play basketball at the collegiate level for a few years. Another reason is that my undergraduate education was based on a philosophy of spirit, mind and body, which was represented by a triangle balancing on one of its points. The image demonstrated that if you have a balance of spirit, mind and body, then it would result in a balanced life. This is something I strongly believe in, and I feel that physical education embodies this philosophy naturally and allows me to share this concept in all of my lessons.”
What was your previous teaching job, and how does it compare to the time you’ve spent at OBHS so far?
“Before working in Oyster Bay High School, I was teaching elementary level physical education and health education at a private school in Manhattan. OBHS has been an amazing place to work, even though it has been such a short time. Everyone has been so welcoming and accepting of me as a new teacher, even in these uncertain times. The administration and faculty are supportive and work extremely hard to make OBHS a place for growth and learning, which shows through the amazing student body. I really enjoy teaching at the secondary level, and I hope to coach as well. I cannot wait to see what the rest of this year holds, both in the classroom and on the field!”
What is your favorite thing about working at OBHS?
“My favorite thing so far about working at OBHS is the people. Everyone from the students, to the staff, to the community, have been so friendly and helpful, and I cannot wait to continue my career working here. I could tell the moment I walked through the high school doors that people here truly care about helping the students learn and grow. To be a part of something like that is truly an awesome feeling!”
Since school is very different this year, what are you doing to help your students stay positive and engaged in PE?
“Even though physical education class may look a little different this year with the new protocols in place, our learning will remain the same. Incorporating different learning sequences and activities allows for students to be involved in new and exciting experiences every time they enter the gym. We also will be completing learning sequences such as “Finding Our Fun” and “Daily D.O.S.E,” which are focused on allowing students to maintain a positive outlook. We also will be completing many team building activities to start the year to help the students stay connected… even if from a distance!”
If you weren’t teaching, what other job would you want to have?
“If I was not a teacher, I would like to be a chef. I enjoy cooking, and I would love to make it a career.”
If you could teach any other class, subject, or elective, what would it be?
“Other than teaching physical education and health education, I would like to teach social studies. Growing up, I really enjoyed history, especially American history. I also would love to coach here at OBHS.”
What do you like to do in your free time?
“In my free time, I like to be active. I love to golf, ride my bike and play basketball. In the summers, I love to spend time at the beach with friends and family and play beach volleyball. I also love the Yankees, so I try to watch as many Yankee games as possible. I also love to cook!”
What are your goals for the upcoming year?
“While it may seem obvious, one goal I have right now is to learn everyone’s name, both in the school and in the community. This has been challenging as everyone is wearing masks all the time, which doesn’t allow me to place a face to a name. My biggest goal for the year is to think outside the box and to stay creative in order to keep the students active, engaged and excited about physical education every day!”