PS duPont Class of '59

Wilmington, Delaware

My Favorite Teacher

Sammy Finesmith, chemistry teacher. TSF: Tough. Sarcastic. Fair.

I saw Sammy a few years before he died and got a chance to thank him for his table of valences that I used in college. Unfortunately, while some of the other teachers were very good, I felt that the curriculum at PS was not tough enough. At the UofD, students from NY and Baltimore were far better prepared in math than I. They all had had Calculus. At the UofD, two years after Sputnik, I was thrown into large math lecture halls, handed an advanced Algebra and Trig text to learn on my own, and was quickly cut down to size when called on and did not know the answer.

If I only had a computer back then.

September 28, 2009 - Posted by | Favorite Teacher, Memories


  1. I would have to say that my two best high school teachers were Miss Levy (no relation to me) and Miss Bryson. Miss Levy would tear up my writings but I learned from her. Georgene Albera, who would pre-read my writing and seemed to know what Miss Levy wanted.
    Then there was the time those in the sorority skipped school and Miss Levy found out we were less than honest with the excuse note…
    Miss Bryson taught me so much as well. She gave us free reign in producing the Clarion but was there to guide us as well. Studying for her exams..Ceci, Lois, Marcia, Susan and I don’t remember who else would burn the midnight oil and make lists of things to remember…what fun.

    Comment by Ellen Levy Koenig | October 31, 2009 | Reply

  2. Bruce Laird for English, Hank Hallet for Calculus, Annabel Groves Howell for music.

    In Hallet’s class the brains were Barbara Anspach and Mimi Carlisle. I saw Mimi a few times after graduation.

    Mr. Miller in Physics was good too. I was a poor student, but did very well on the SATs. So they did a good job.

    Comment by Steve Dunn | October 10, 2011 | Reply

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