Five Things You Didn’t Know About Mr. Schumacher

1.) He wasn’t born- he was hatched. Known as the “baby of the family,” and the youngest of six children Joseph Schumacher was heavily influenced by his two older brothers and three older sisters. By the time he was old enough to talk his sister had trained him to reply to the question, “When were you born?” with the answer ”I wasn’t born I was hatched.” As a toddler he says he honestly believed he was special because unlike his friends he was hatched.

2.) He is married and has two children.  His wife’s name is Erin Schumacher, and she is 100 percent Irish. Mr. Schumacher describes his wife as, “a violent women, because she’s Irish.” But says, “She’s my wife so I Iove her anyway.” His son Jack is 12 and his daughter is Sadie is 10 years old. When asked to describe his kids in one word, he says they are “precious” and he also says that he cannot imagine living without them.

3.) He’s been a teacher in some capacity his whole life. As a small child he was, “always able to understand the bigger picture in the school of life.” After majoring in creative writing in college, he eventually had to get a job and decided to become what he calls,” A professional educator.” He has now been a teacher for 16 years.

He taught for two years at East High School, but left because he felt too contained. If he had stayed at East he says that he would have probably have quit teaching by now. He has taught at West since his third year as a teacher, and describes West as an institution where he instantly felt right at home.  West embraced his teaching methods and he says that there is no other high school that he would be willing to teach at.

Besides teaching high school he also served as an adjunct professor at University of Alaska Anchorage teaching winter camping and wilderness survival. One of his favorite things is spending time in the great outdoors and he loves being able to share his knowledge of the outdoors with other people.  The best part of teaching for Mr. Schumacher is, “Being immersed in the positive, creative energy all day every day.” He can’t think of any other job where he could work with such an able and excited group of people.

4.)  His greatest passion throughout his life is skiing.  He started skiing as a child and it is the one thing that has remained constant in his life. He has had other passions in his life, but none of them have lasted anywhere near as long as skiing has. His passion for skiing has even grown as he has gotten older.

5.)  He is the “most fun teacher at west.” When talking with some of former and current students it is clear how well liked Mr. Schumacher is. His students appreciate his laid back teaching style and sense of humor. “He is really funny which makes doing work not that bad, but he can also take things seriously when he has to,” says his former student and teacher aide Carla Hanley.

Current student Katie Shake has very few complaints about him, “The only thing I don’t like about his class is how hot it is in his relo.” It is clear that Mr. Schumacher has found a job that suits him and that his students benefit a lot from taking his class. If you are interested in taking a class with Mr. Schumacher he teaches Science Fiction, French 1 and 2, and English 10.