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Marca Robinson Rm: PA 009

Notes

MRS. MARTINEZ, THE LONG BEACH JACKABRU

Can a jackrabbit be happy teaching Film Analysis to a den of bruins? Yes she can! This Jackrabbit left her rabbit hutch a long time ago and has actually taught at Wilson much longer than she ever attended Poly High School; so long, in fact, that she considers herself a Jackabru! This is her sixteenth year at Wilson and it's been an adventure! She's taught classes including Film Analysis, ELL English, ELL Reading, English 1/2, English 5/6, English 7/8, Literacy Workshop, Modern World History, and U.S. History. Every year has been a bit different, which she really enjoys, because her job never gets boring!

 

Once upon a time, a very long time ago, Patty, wasn't a Martinez...she was a McMullen with Scottish, Irish, British, Dutch, and Scandinavian ancestry, plus a tiny bit of Moroccan, part of a large family that eventually consisted of six kids and two parents. Long Beach has been her home for almost all of her life, except for the first two years, where she spent her time sweating in her little diaper in Phoenix, Arizona. The McMullen family crossed the treacherous desert to live in beautiful Long Beach, California, when she was two years old, and she's eternally happy to be a transplanted California girl! Little Patty had it a bit rough to start off. She was born with hip dysplasia and a malformed right hip socket, so at the age of three, doctors began to put casts on her to try to keep her hip from dislocating. That didn't work, so she had her first hip surgery at age five, where a new hip was made from a bone graft. They put her in a body cast after that, and she remembers being itchy and uncomfortable. Later, she was in an an abduction bar to help leg movement. While she doesn't enjoy the body searches by TSA agents when she travels because her hip replacement sets off security alarms, she realizes how fortunate she is to not only get to travel, but to even walk at all.

 

Burnett Elementary (now Bobbie Smith Elementary) was her elementary school, then on to Hughes Jr. High, and she later graduated from Poly. She next earned a Bachelor's Degree from LB State and a Master's Degree from Cal State, Dominguez Hills. Mrs. Martinez is the first college graduate in her family. Neither of her parents even graduated from high school. Her high school sweetheart, Jerry, and she married soon after he earned a BS degree in chemical engineering at CAL (UC Berkeley) and started his first "real" job in the Failure Analysis lab (aerospace/electrical engineering) at Hughes Aircraft (which eventually became Boeing). Jerry earned an MA degree in electrical engineering from LB State. After Boeing, he continued his career at Trident Space and Defense, and then on to failure analysis at JPL (Jet Propulsion Lab) where one of the projects he is working on is InSight, another Mars rover.

 

Mrs. Martinez began her teaching career at a private Catholic school in North Long Beach thirty-one years ago, not sure that she even wanted to teach as a profession. Teaching was just going to help pay the bills until something better came along. She was twenty-three years old at the time, and some of the kids were not easy to teach, but she improved and began to think that maybe this was what she was really meant to do with her life. Plus, she had already begun working on her teaching credential. Eventually, public school was in her front view mirror, because the money was A LOT better and the little Martinez family of mom + dad + two kitties wanted to buy a house someday. Her first stop on the public school highway began at Washington Middle School for seven years. Next came Mary Butler, where teaching sixth-graders for one year convinced her that middle school wasn't her "thing" anymore and that high school was the place to be, which resulted in a transfer to Wilson. 

 

The Martinez couple celebrated their 33rd wedding anniversary in August 2017. They both enjoy traveling and have visited all fifty states, along with several Caribbean islands including Cuba and also Puerto Rico, where her husband's father's side of the family came from. They have traveled to Europe together three times; the latest was to visit her hubby's relatives in Germany. They have also been to Greece, and this past summer went on a cruise that stopped in Denmark, Norway, Finland, Sweden, Estonia, Russia, and Germany. Additionally, they have also visited Mrs. Martinez's mother's mother's side of the family in Winnipeg, Canada, which leads to her main hobby, genealogy. She traced a couple branches of her family tree back to the 1100's in Britain. She also discovered that she has had a family member fight in every single war since the American Revolution. Her 6th great-grandfather took care of General George Washington's horses at Valley Forge; his brother was Washington's manservant. Also, her great-grandfather fought for the Union in the Civil War, and her 1st cousin, 3x removed died at Andersonville POW Camp in Georgia. She has found it to be thrilling to see how deep her roots are in this country. Both Martinezes have had their DNA tested with very interesting results. 

 

Additionally, Mrs. M. is a reader, whose favorite authors are Stephen King and Edgar Allan Poe. She and her hubby also enjoy going on "field trips" with a group called Atlas Obscura, where they have been to a puppet workshop, toured the Long Beach Airport, walked through the Los Cerritos Wetlands, visited a wolf sanctuary (and got to pet wolves!), have seen magic shows, plus other adventures. 

 

Finally, Mrs. M. is an award-winning teacher, who was honored to receive the Jackie Robinson Breaking Boundaries award at Dodger Stadium on Jackie Robinson Day in April 2017. She also received an Excellent Teacher Award from Assembly Member Patrick O'Donnell and was one of the teachers honored on the field before a Long Beach State Dirtbags baseball game, both in May 2017.

 

That's a lot about Mrs. Martinez. What about YOU? Mrs. M. looks forward to getting to know her students!

Let's have a great year!