Meet Mr. Meier: An Inside Look at Cresskill’s Newest History Teacher

As the start of another unconventional year at Cresskill begins, we welcome new faces into our community. One of these is Mr. Meier, the newest addition to our school’s history department.

I talked with Mr. Meier to get an idea of what his first few weeks have been like at CHS.

“Everyone has been very welcoming,” he said. “The students have been great.”

This year, he has taken on the task of teaching AP U.S. history, U.S. I Honors, and U.S. II Honors, a role once possessed by beloved Cresskill teacher: Mr. Metz. Stepping into the shoes of such an esteemed teacher is certainly not without its challenges. Luckily, Mr. Meier has the experience it takes to fill Mr. Metz’s shoes. As a teacher of ten years, he has experience teaching in classrooms in various schools in the surrounding area.

“I was a student teacher at River Dell High School. I taught briefly at Ramsey High School my first year and for the previous nine years I have taught at Summit High School.”

With his experience, Mr. Meier has developed a particular method of teaching which he implements in his classes. When asked about his teaching philosophy, Mr. Meier responded, “I try to teach in a more student-centered way rather than me talking the whole period.”

According to students, Meier’s classes include a lot of collaborative work which encourages them to interact with one another and offers a refreshing break from the loneliness of online learning. 

Also, contrary to some other history classes, Mr. Meier “[Tries] to focus on teaching the big ideas rather than obsessing over names and dates.”

As well as teaching history, Mr. Meier has stepped into other roles at CHS, one of which is advising the new Mock Trial Club where students are mimicking the proceedings of an actual trial. They will have the chance to act as the defense and prosecution in trials with other high schoolers in the region.

Being a teacher at a new high school is tough enough. But when that school floods exactly one week prior to the start of the year, it adds a new layer of unexpected challenges. Virtual learning makes some of the more social aspects of teaching at a high school harder to experience. “I was looking forward to getting to know my new colleagues as well as my students.” However, he is making the best of a difficult situation and is “looking forward to seeing people in person soon.”

Although going back to online learning is not an ideal situation, Mr. Meier has some advice for Cresskill students: “Overcoming challenges in life will only make you stronger.”

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