Wednesday, June 8, 2011

The Man Known as Mr. K

     It was the last day of school in 4th grade, 1991, at Candlewood Elementary School in Rockville, Maryland.  I received my report card and I really didn't have a desire to see how I did that 4th grading period.  My desire was on the back of the report card to see who I was going to have as my 5th grade teacher that next year.  There were three to choose from (like I had a choice), but there was only one who's class I wanted to be in.  He was the coolest and most awesome teacher, and he was in charge of the patrols.  I looked at the back of my report card that day in June and it said that I was going to be in Mr. Kuykendall's class for 5th grade.  I was elated!!!
     That next year in 5th grade was one of, if not, the best years of my K-12 public education career.  There were so many things about his class that made it enjoyable to learn.  I remember one time he showed us a picture of Lou Gehrig's baseball jersey that was sold at auction.  He then asked us to guess how much the jersey sold for.  I guessed $100,000.  Another classmate guessed $150,000.  The correct answer was $125,000.  We both got a Snickers bar for being the closest.
     Today, I surprised him after school.  He had absolutely no idea that I was coming.  We talked for a bit in the library, but then he had something he had to do and then an appointment to go to, but he asked if I had dinner plans.  We had dinner at the Ruby Tuesday at Lakeforest Mall in Gaithersburg, which he frequents occasionally.  We were there for a good two and a half hours, mostly reminiscing about that year in 5th grade.  He managed to find his photo album of "Candlewood 1991-1992."  Wow.  Oh the memories.  I was actually surprised I could remember most of my classmates' names.  He was a great model for me as a man and as a teacher.


  1. I'm incredibly jealous that you had the chance to do that. He's an incredible educator, and to think that he's still there, 20 years later, is testament to his commitment. I remember one day when someone came in who was currently in high school and had him 5 or so years before that.

    If you ever hear that he's retiring, let's throw him a party or something.

  2. He IS retiring. He has 4.5 days left.