TDP Sweet Sixteen: Ms. McAuliffe

Ms. McAuliffe, described by some of her freshman students as “smart,” “fun-loving,” and “laid-back,” is a math teacher at Burlington High School. Here is what she has to say about what she was listening to at sixteen. 

imagesAs I started this I realized that my sixteen-year-old self was not all that different than my…. not-16-year-old current self  – all over the map.  In high school, I bounced around a lot.  I had a lot of friends in all the different social groups, and I got along well with everyone, but never had a best friend or a perfect clique that I fell into. I think I liked it that way.  My closest girlfriends were those I played soccer with.  “Let Me Clear My Throat Now” was on our warm-up TAPE  year after year.  It reminds me of fall afternoons and summer double-sessions.  When I switched into hockey season, where I played on the boys team, I had no choice but to listen to Nirvana, RATM, and endless Metallica.  Intense.  Those bands make me think of before-school practices, pasta parties, and completely inappropriate hockey movies.

I had one goth friend (I’ll shamefully admit that our friendship outlasted our common interests because her family had the INTERNET and we could spend time on chatrooms… so cool).  No Doubt was what she would play that I could tolerate (with NIN and Marilyn Manson being the other options).

My first two concerts were Phish and then Shania Twain.  Go figure.  Shania was my gateway into loving country music.

3EB makes me think of my friends who got into things that I didn’t want to get into.

Friends and Dawson’s Creek theme songs… couldn’t leave those out.


Each of these songs brings an exact person or group into my memory.  I like not fitting into one category of music.  Being open-minded in music, and life, has exposed me to songs/bands/people that I probably wouldn’t have expected myself to like.  It’s helped me as a teacher because sometimes I think I can see parts of these songs… whether it’s the emotion or the lyrics or the scene… in particular students.  I think this helps me relate to them in ways I wouldn’t have anticipated.




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