Teacher of the Year-Mr. Bryan

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Teacher of the Year-Mr. Bryan

Taylor Wilkinson, RHS News Reporter

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What makes a great teacher? Is it the way they teach? The way they interact with the students? Or are they just a nice person? This year, Rodriguez High School proudly presents one of our most prized teachers located in the math hall. This teacher is no other than Mr. Bryan. Being his thirty-fourth and final year of teaching, Bryan will end on a positive note by all his beloved students picking him to be Teacher of the Year!


Obviously, Rick Bryan wasn’t always a teacher. He is from the Bay Area, more specifically he grew up in Concord, California and then later moved over to Walnut Creek. When he attended college, he began at UC Berkeley. “Sadly, the school didn’t really work out for me, it’s a great school no doubt about that, but my living situation was simply prohibiting me from functioning as a college student.” Knowing UC Berkeley wouldn’t work, he then attended DVC for a year and a half, and later attended Sacramento State, where he graduated.

His inspiration of wanting to become a teacher was due to him coming from a whole family of teachers. “Both my parents were teachers, a couple of my grandparents were teachers along with my brother who has been a teacher and an administrator in this district. Both of my sister in laws were teachers as well and also my wife is a teacher.” Despite so many family members being teachers, that was not always his goal. He originally majored in business management. However, even then, he always had that urge to help people. And that is when his passion for teaching had begun.

Over his years of teaching, he has worked at Armijo High School for sixteen years and began working at Rodriguez for the remaining eighteen years of his teaching career. He has taught subjects from pre-algebra all the way to Calculus. His favorite by far, is Algebra Two which is a mixture of Math two and three. “I don’t know exactly why it was my favorite whether it was the kids in the class or just enjoying what was being taught.” His wide variety of teaching different levels have all contributed to being one of the many reasons as to why he was nominated and chosen for Teacher of the Year.

So far, Mr. Bryan’s pre-teaching life and teaching life have been discussed, but what about after this year ends? Bryan is planning to retire and not have any immediate plans but he hopes to travel more, mainly to Europe because his job schedule has never really allowed him to take such an excursion.

What does being a teacher consist of? Teaching may seem like a pretty easy job because many think that any person could have the ability to instruct thirty-two kids in a total of five classes. That is where many are wrong. Mr. Bryan speaks for all the teachers when he says teaching is highly underestimated and not all people could handle the life of a teacher. On the subject, Bryan claims, “a person has to understand that teaching involves a lot of patience, hard work, and you have to have the ability to enjoy being the students.” The legendary math teacher views being a teacher is as a performer; they have five shows a day that you have to prepare for and be ready for. Outside of the big responsibilities of being a teacher, Mr. Bryan enjoys playing golf and enjoys woodworking, even though he doesn’t get to do it as much as he would like to.

To wrap it up, Rick Bryan felt very special being chosen for Teacher of the Year, it took him thirty-four years to earn this award and he finally got it. Bryan believes that one of the best things about earning this award was he got to have it before he ends his career as being a teacher. And for the new teachers coming to Rodriguez, he suggests one thing and one thing only, a person has to like kids. If they don’t, the students pick it up and everyone else picks up on it as well. As we bid farewell to our fellow math teachers, we can all learn that if we have a passion for something we should pursue it and in the long run, do what makes you happy.