The Rollercoaster Ride of My Life, Part 2

Brendan Connelly, Contributing Writer

At The Forum School in Waldwick, New Jersey, it would be like heaven. Once again it was a small school with nice teachers and students willing to assist all children. The school had a swimming pool and a hot lunch every day as well. My first teacher was Mrs. Keener. She taught me a lot that year. The most important though was to never give up.

The following year, Mrs. Keener would be my teacher again. I felt happy to know I was going to be taught by someone I already knew and someone who made me feel at home. September, 1996, I did not change schools, but I changed teachers. My teacher was Mrs. Russo. I was fortunate again to be with someone who was very kind and helpful to all her kids.

Two years later I had another teacher change. This time it was Mrs. Jaffe. She again was very supportive of everyone. She was the one who actually taught me how to write. She made us write a journal entry every day and every other week she made us write stories. I had her as a teacher for three years. However, before the third year, I was given a challenge. The fall of 2000, I was given the news that I would be moving into the Departmentalized Program of the school. However, I would be given a nice surprise. My teacher would be Mrs. Jaffe, who was my teacher the previous two years. I felt more comfortable moving to the upper class having a teacher who I worked with before. She would be my homeroom teacher and my English teacher. For Math, History, and Science, I would have to change classes. My history teacher was Mr. DeMarco. He taught us all about US History and World History.

My Science teacher was Mr. Kaine. He was very nice and very funny.  He also had us bring in a science article every Friday. My Math teacher was Mr. Monsma. What I liked about his class was that he taught all different kinds of basic math and he also brought in a Dyno Math magazine every month. I liked all my main teachers, but my all-time favorite teacher was my Speech teacher Mrs. Amabile. She was kind and fun to be with.  The teachers were all very nice there, but so were the students. I made a lot of friends there and some of them I am still friends with today.

I can still vividly remember one day when one of my friends gave me and my classmates news that would shock us all. On September 11, 2001, the United States was attacked by Afghanistan and Osama Bin Laden. My friends and I were riding on the bus, a normal day we thought, but our bus driver Mario who usually had music on the radio had news on instead that day. We did not think anything of it, until we got to school and one of my closest friends, Andrew Coraci, told us that the World Trade Center had been flown into by terrorists. I can still remember the shock on everyone’s faces when he said that. All New York residents had to stay in the school overnight. I was lucky enough to be living in New Jersey so I could go home. I did not see the towers actually get hit until I got home. If not for Andrew, I don’t believe anyone would have found out until the end of the school day. Forum gave me many memories, but this one stands out the most.