After a long vacation, the Ensworth Grind is back! For those of you new to this feature, every week we highlight a new faculty member from each campus and introduce them to the Ensworth community. This week we are catching up with Hayley Robb, history teacher at the Red Gables campus.
This is my first year teaching at Ensworth and I love it. Previously, I’ve taught in Vietnam and Huntsville, Alabama. I’ve always wanted to live in Nashville so last spring I started looking at jobs in town and was thrilled when Ensworth called me to come in for an interview. I remember visiting Mr. Corzine’s English class and falling in love with the school and its students and faculty. I’m so happy to be here.
We just finished doing a unit on the Stock Market Crash of 1929 that I think will be a favorite among both the students and teachers. The students were given imaginary money to invest in three available stocks and at the end of class each day the market opened for trading. Students learned about buying on margin, dividends, and how to buy and sell stocks based upon the market indicators. The students believed that their grades for the unit were tied to their wealth and worked especially hard to play the market well. Unfortunately, just as some were truly striking it rich in the stock market, it crashed on “Black Tuesday” and many were left with nothing. The panic that many of them felt watching their “grades” slide down is analogous to the panic many investors felt during the Crash of 1929. They loved the thrill of the stock market and were even happier with the unit when we told them that their grades were not actually tied to their wealth values!
You have been working a lot with Mr. Scott and Mr. Wallace on some pretty hands-on simulations with the history department, can you tell us a little about those.
I truly believe that my students get a better education when I’m collaborating with others. Mr. Scott and Mr. Wallace are so much fun to work with and we make each other better as teachers.
We’ve been able to bring our classes together multiple times throughout the year to help add an element of empathy to their academic studies. For example, the students recently did research on immigrant experiences in the US in the early 1900s. After turning in a research paper, they were given a character who was either an immigrant or an Ellis Island processor. We combined our classes in the Commons and set up a mock Ellis Island station. It was an incredible day where the kids were able to use their research to make history come alive and have a lot of fun in the process. Truly, most of the credit for this day goes to Mr. Scott who told Mr. Wallace and me about the activity.
I absolutely love the black bean burgers! I usually make a big spinach salad with lots of veggies and cheese on top and then get a black bean burger placed on top of it. Add a little sour cream to the top, and it is a fantastic meal.
When you are not at Ensworth what takes up most of your free time?
I’ve always been a big runner so I love going outside and running or hiking on trails. I’m also new to Nashville so I love trying out restaurants in town. I think Burger Up might be my favorite. Finally, I love playing long games of Scrabble or Bananagrams with my fiancee, Tyler.
Who is a faculty/staff member at the high school that you would like to see featured next?
I’d love to know more about the amazing Ann West. She’s a big part of why we get to work here because she brings us amazing students as the Director of Admissions at the high school.