Matthew Mayeske breathes life into world history and geography for his ninth and 10th grade students at Gardner Edgerton High School, where he was a student himself. Mayeske employs a dynamic teaching approach to engage his students and position them for success. His methods include the integration of real-world scenarios and collaborative, inquiry-based instructional practices, transforming the study of subjects into vibrant learning experiences for his students.
Specifically, Mayeske implements a yearlong roleplaying game, where students create a family and participate in simulation activities for each unit. Additionally, he orchestrates a French Revolution simulation, and a strategy-style conflict activity modeled after the popular board game Risk to illustrate World War I diplomacy. In geography, students study interactive maps using GIS technology that allows them to analyze data and trends. By promoting hands-on learning and building a strong sense of self, Mayeske’s students are not only comprehending content on a deep level but also are developing transferable skills crucial for their future education, careers and beyond.
Mayeske's passion, dedication and leadership reach beyond his classroom, creating an inclusive environment that draws students – even those not in his classes – to visit during breaks. A proven leader, Mayeske assumes various extracurricular responsibilities, heading a variety of after-school clubs including Diversity Club; Link Crew, a leadership program of upperclassmen who mentor younger students; Geography Club; Table Gaming Club; Anime Club; and the Ping Pong Club. He leads the Climate and Culture Committee and actively participates in the school’s Building Leadership Team and SITE Council, which reviews and evaluates school improvement initiatives. His influence even extends to the playing field, where he coaches track and serves as an announcer for football, soccer and wrestling. Both young and seasoned colleagues view Mayeske as a role model, as he has served as a keynote speaker at district gatherings and is actively involved in professional development initiatives.
Mayeske earned a Bachelor of Arts in secondary education in 2018 from MidAmerica Nazarene University and a Master of Science in education with a specialization in English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) from Pittsburg State University in 2020.
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