Al Daniels - "The Early Years"

Al Daniels, Travis Mann-Gow and Lindsay Stanley take a brief break while working on the Spafford Cemetery

The above photo is a result of a "festival" the sixth grade has at the end of a unit of study about the Caribbean region

Pat Nilsson is to my left Diane Bushey is to my right in the H. Bellows 200th birthday celebration photo

Mr. Daniels started his teaching career at Bellows Free Academy - Fairfax in 1975 and has been teaching sixth grade Science and Social Studies for the past 28 years. He is a graduate of Northeast High School in St. Petersburg, Florida and has a BA from Johnson State College in Johnson, Vermont.

Al lives here in Fairfax and his three children are: James, who teaches high school French, Sara, a teacher at BFA - Fairfax who teaches High School English and Amy a clinical dietician in Boston, Ma. He decided to become a teacher during his second year of college and became more interested in Science through the influence of his Education Majors.

The privilege of working with our most valuable resource, Our Children, has been Mr. Daniels greatest inspiration in being a successful educator. He attempts to make learning an interesting and challenging experience which will provide a variety of opportunities for success in the future. Al feels, "If you demonstrate to students how much you care about them and their education, it helps to make you a successful educator."

When asked what advice he would offer to a new or discouraged teacher, he replied, "Remember they are young and what you and your friends were like at that age. Realize it is a challenge each day."

Favorite recreational activities for Al are, running, Reading, visiting covered bridges, history (Vermont, Mayan, the Maya were/are a Mesoamerican culture that reached it's height long before Columbus arrived, & Aztec) and puttering.

Favorite projects for his students that they seem to enjoy are: Hiking Mount Mansfield, Visiting Montreal, Incubating Chicks, Making a Perpetual Motion Machine and Green-Up. Projects that require text book work, however do not seem to be amongst their favorites.

During his long career in teaching, Mr. Daniels feels he has learned to relax more and has found that it is very important that he communicate as much as possible with the parents.

The biggest changes he has seen at BFA - Fairfax over the past 28 years are an increase in resources available for special education, working with teams of educators, the population increase, development of the middle school and the building expansions.

Henry A. Raymond
June 19, 2003