November 16, 2012: David Goldenberg (left), an advanced placement history teacher for Arnold O. Beckman High School in the Tustin Unified School District in Orange County was honored as one of California's five Teachers of the Year.
According to Fermin Leal, reporter for the Orange County Register: Goldenberg brings history to life through class discussions and debates. He believes that students learn the most when they can dominate the discussion. His students debate a variety of issues including Marxist ideas and the women's movement. Often, the discussions and debates last longer than the class sessions. Goldenberg can often hear his students continuing their discussions in the hall. He brings creativity to the classroom and uses games to introduce complex ideas and has students adapt song lyrics to contemporary music to describe different East Asian civilization.
"Students in Goldenberg's classes have an average passing rate of 81 percent on AP tests, nearly three times higher than the national average."
In announcing the award, state Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson said,"Mr. Goldenberg makes history come alive for his students that makes them feel engaged and eager to learn," said Torlakson. "He sees his career as a calling to serve his country in a profession that has meaning. Every school day, he teaches as if it's a wonderful opportunity to make a difference in the lives of his students."
Goldenberg believes in his students and their future, Goldenberg said in his 2013 California Teacher of the year application “I do not see students as they are today, but as the people that they can become—I want my students to see possibilities, to overcome adversity, and to become the best versions of themselves."
Written By: Taylor McCulloch