Meet GT middle school teacher Bill Ringler.
Short bio for a long life, hmm—“Conundrums shine in my GT concerto,” is the best opener that I can find in the minutes before my deadline. I’ve been asked to provide a couple paragraphs about both my background and my thoughts on working with gifted children. A long bio about a short life seems less daunting, but I’ll do my best.
Doing my best, or at least seeking to do my best, is a good place to start for a former boy scout who has always aspired to be the protagonist in a heroic tale. Lavishly spoiled by a librarian grandmother, I grew up surrounded by literature. In school I was inspired by a teacher who believed exploring was greater than memorizing. To continue the spire motif, I also perspired heavily for worthy coaches who taught the importance of dedication and honest effort. These people made a difference in my life, and I chose to follow their example in the hopes of making my own difference.
A tour with the Army, college at the University of North Texas, teaching high school English and coaching football in Richardson, and finally, teaching ILA at Roach Middle School all prepared me for the ultimate test—teacher of the Gifted and Talented. The GT classroom is most definitely a place where differences are made, celebrated, revised, tweaked, and repurposed.
In conclusion, my job has provided a crazily chaotic jaw-dropping experience so far, and the tracks ahead are obscured by clouds, promising that the ride is far from over. If the person controlling this ride ever reads these words, it would be ok with me if you slowed things down once in a while. It might be even better if lunches and weekends weren’t optional.
Bill Ringler is a GT teacher at Roach Middle School.