Rich Darrach

 

  • Name: Rich Darrach

  • School: Las Plumas High School

  • Region: Superior

  • Education and/or industry experience: Cal Poly, SLO; BS in Agricultural Science. Industry experience in logging industry.

  • Years teaching ag: 5

  • Subjects you teach: Ag Mechanics and Heavy Equipment & Construction

  • Hobbies and interests outside of teaching: Family (2 yr old son) and fishing

  • What do you love most about being an ag teacher? I love that my career is also my lifestyle.  Everything I do at home is directly related to my career and everything I do at “work” is directly related to what I do at home.  It’s so important to be able to relate to the kids just how real-life the world of ag education really is.  I love opening the doors of real-life to the kids so they can experience life outside of four walls and a bunch of pavement.

  • What is your biggest challenge as an ag teacher? Finding time to get everything done and not being able to please everyone.  There’s just no realistic way to do both of those things in entirety so learning time management and prioritization are key to teaching ag, and accepting that I’m not a superhero helps keep things in perspective.

  • What have you learned thus far in your teaching career that you wish you would have known when you first began teaching? That I don’t have to know everything to be good at what I do. I’ve learned so much more about what I teach by just having some years of experience in it now. Even the things I did know more about I now know so much more just because of time and experience.

  • What advice would you give a novice teacher entering this profession now? Ask questions early on, find your passion(s) and develop it/them, and use all the help you can get: teaching partners, industry professionals, teacher assistants, advanced students and students that show a real passion for the subject. On that note – treat all students fairly, but remember that not all students are equal.  Those who show real interest will need your time and attention so they don’t lose interest!

  • What personal qualities or abilities do you think are important to being successful in this profession? Heart – students want to see that I am passionate about ag and FFA.  Smile – students want to see that I enjoy being with them and doing what I do.  Work ethic – I need it to get the job done day to day and it’s something we teach our kids that is not necessarily taught anywhere else.

  • What specific skills are important to being successful in this profession? Time management, organization (which I’m still working on), and COMMUNICATION!

  • What most prepared you for being an agriculture educator? Real life experiences and work experiences in high school and college.  All the books in the world will only get you so far in the real world. Get out there and get your hands dirty learning as many different things as you can.  Also learning to interact with people whether it was managing employees on the dairy or studying the Bible to learn how we are to live and work with one another.

  • Describe ag teaching in one to two words. Exciting! Rewarding!

     

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Teach Ag 2020

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