Math teacher born without arms teaches class - with feet
Plucky young woman seeks to inspire student to overcome obstacles
Mary Gannon is a math and science instructor at a Lakewood, Ohio middle school. Like all teachers, she hopes to lead by example, and to encourage all of her students to overcome all their obstacles. Born without arms, Gannon instructs her students using her prehensile feet.
Teacher Mary Gannon writes on the board, types on her computer and hands out worksheets with her toes.
Gannon grew up in a Mexican orphanage and was adopted by an Ohio family when she was seven. She joined the staff of her current school last year as a substitute teacher and now tutors 6th, 7th and 8th graders full-time.
She drives to work in a car with the number plate that reads "Happy Feet."
Gannon says she hopes her determination will teach the children a valuable life lesson.
"I'm doing what I wanted to do, what I love to do," she says. "And if you set your mind to whatever you want to do and you love to do then - go for it - no one can stop you."
Gannon dislikes such terms as "handicapped" or even "different," "because it has a negative bias," she says.
But "if it's gonna inspire or help people for them to be or do better in their lives then I'm okay with that and I hope that people gain something from me," she said.
The students all say Ms. Gannon inspires them and has shown them that they could overcome their struggles.
"She inspires me because she [shows me] how good I can get at some math problems cause I'm not really that good at math," 6th grader Jaden Johnson says.
"It teaches you that you can do anything you want to do no matter what," Eighth grader Cambri Griffin tells reporters.
Her fellow instructors at Harding Middle School all agree she provides a good example to all the students.
"I think people are gonna say, "if she can do it, I certainly can do it,'" Assistant Principal Joe Tackacs says.
© 2014 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM
Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for March 2014
Respect for Women: That all cultures may respect the rights and dignity of women.
Vocations: That many young people may accept the Lordís invitation to consecrate their lives to proclaiming the Gospel.
Rate This Article
Leave a Comment
More Living Faith News
- What will your Lenten Pledge be?
- Pope Francis says papal summer residence gardens be opened to the public
- Pope Francis makes special plea, but will any Catholics really listen?
- Pope Francis charts a brave new course for the Church!
- Pope urges faithful to show love to those who have suffered divorce
- Family as Domestic Church: Good Eats at the Dump
- Benedict XVI calls resignation conspiracy theories 'absurd'
- Pope Francis welcomes outside world to scrutinize Vatican's finances
- Bible in chest pocket shields two bullets - and saves bus driver's life
- Fr. Paul Schenck: Finding Living Faith on Catechetical Sunday
- The Movie Yellow: Incest as 'Normal' and Cassavates's Slides Into the World of Woes
- The Chicago School Teachers Strike Reveals the Need For School Choice
- The Sexual Barbarians and the Dissolution of Culture
- The Happy Priest Challenges Us to Ask: Who is Jesus to Me?
- Michael Coren on Canadian Public Schools: Teachers, leave those kids alone
- We Cannot Ignore Our Consciences: Cardinal Dolan On Religious Liberty
- In the Face of Danger, Successor of Peter Travels to Lebanon as a Messenger of Peace
- Reflections on the Dignity and Vocation of Women: Who or What?