Why do you do what you do?
As a youngster, I began to think that teaching would be a good choice for me. At the time, I was helping out in the church nurseries and realized that it was enjoyable for me. Baby-sitting also was enjoyable and sometimes very challenging. The consequence of this thinking and getting the training necessary to teach was that I was able to have a 33-year career as an elementary- school teacher. It was a demanding and rewarding career, and I am glad for it — and the wealth of memories it has provided.
Volunteering became an activity for me at first in my church. For many years, I have been in choir and enjoy the singing and
fellowship. I also volunteered weekly in the baby nursery for several years until the baby colds became Polly colds, etc., and I felt I needed to step aside and permit others to take over. My husband and I often are called upon to help at our church with funeral dinners or preparing mailings to the congregation, and we enjoy that.
Once I retired from teaching school, the idea of volunteering resurfaced. My husband was going to a cardiac rehab program, and I was so grateful for the help he received that volunteering to help out seemed a natural way to say thank you. Now I volunteer sometimes in that program and pretty regularly at Aultman North.
What is on your bucket list?
This question caused me to think a bit. I have done many things I never would have dreamed of as a girl. I have been all over the United States and Canada, even Hawaii, not because of my own dreams but because my husband loves to travel and he would plan trips packed with as much as possible. We both enjoy seeing historic sites and museums. Now, at this time in my life, my bucket list is occupied with fewer things. I would love to ride a blimp or a hot-air balloon, produce enough of my own artwork to have a small show of my own — and clean my basement to have an organized and clean workroom/office.
What is on my mind?
As a lifelong teacher, both as a career and as a personal attitude, I have always enjoyed the process of learning — my own learning and helping others learn. Most of my intense concerns are in this area.
We do not teach our own history to our children. Many do not know anything about how this country came to be or how it has maintained itself so far. I firmly believe that if we do not know history, we will be doomed to repeat it.
It concerns me that our children learn to use a calculator instead of learning their math facts. What happens when the batteries go dead? Much research says that memorization is a great neural pathway builder, so it seems to me that memorization of anything — math facts, poetry, whatever — would be good for our youngsters.쏏
Who: Polly Rebstock
What: Retired teacher and volunteer
Boards: I served on various boards years ago, but nowadays I prefer to work behind the scenes and volunteer where I am needed.
Education: Attended two years at Susquehanna University (1963-65) in Selinsgrove, Pa. Graduated from Malone College with a degree in elementary education (1965-67), earned specialty training in middle-school child at Kent State University (in the 1980s), earned art certificate awarded by the state of Ohio, and received a master’s degree from Walsh College (1990-91).