Richard Menger teaches biology and life sciences to grades seven through twelve at Baker High School in Baker. "Even as a rookie teacher, twenty years ago, I recognized the individuality and uniqueness of each student who entered my classroom," says Mr. Menger. In a concrete effort to accommodate the range of differing abilities he encountered among his students, Mr. Menger proceeded to develop four levels of course offerings within the biology curriculum, thereby allowing all of his students to pursue an appropriate course of study in biology. Green Jeans Horticulture, Montana's only full- year horticulture curriculum, has been one of the remarkable outcomes of Mr. Mengers's four-part plan. "Green Jeans Horticulture has certainly been a successful undertaking, and reprints of units of study and objectives have been requested worldwide," says Mr. Menger. The tree nursery, planted in the first year of program, now boasts a variety of over 2500 trees. "This nursery is maintained and used as an outdoor classroom and wildlife habitat." This particular course is just one instance of Mr. Menger's rigorous and imaginative methods. His energetic and enlightened brand of education creates flourishing conditions for all participants.
The leadership of MFF has enabled me to take part in panel discussions, educator workshops, and become acquainted with national authoritative speakers. They have also connected me to a very large worldwide network of excellent resource people or "contacts" to share information and ideas. These "contacts" include educators and specialists in Argentina, Canada, Germany, Greece, Poland, Mexico, Russia, South Africa, Switzerland, and sixteen states in USA. I'm sure this list will continue to grow!
After 38 very fulfilling years of teaching science I'm still getting better and love my job thoroughly. After 40 years of teaching biology, chemistry and horticulture I retired in 2014. I am now employed by Fallon County, Montana as a environmental health specialist/sanitarian.
Richard A.Menger, MS, REHS