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Teacher Feature- Mr. (Dylan) Chapman

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Today’s Teacher Feature is the first in a new series of columns featuring the local teachers at Grass Lake Community Schools. We hope to help the community to become more familiar with the teachers and administrators of the Grass Lake Community Schools.

Dylan Chapman began teaching U.S. History, Civics/Econ, and World History                         at Grass Lake High School this year. He grew up in a town similar to Grass Lake, Onsted. Mr. Chapman graduated from Onsted High School, went to Kalamazoo Community College then transferred to Eastern Michigan University where he earned a Bachelor’s in Secondary Education. He is endorsed as highly qualified to teach 6th through 12th grade Social Studies (RX) comprehensive.

Mr. Chapman says that Grass Lake is exactly the type of district he was looking for. He has been welcomed by both the students and staff and he was lucky enough to get chosen to be the Sophomore class advisor!

In Mr. Chapman’s classes he focuses on getting his students to experience history while appealing to all personality types. He uses simulations to get students active and become the stories that they learn about. They do hands-on projects,  create artifacts and use song and art to learn. His classes are exciting and fun! Mr. Chapman is quick to add that he has found Grass Lake students to be both engaging and intellectual.

An example of using simulation and music is when they were studying the Great Depression. He writes “For the Great Depression we ran a soup kitchen simulation. I brought in a crock pot of soup, I had the students line up in the hall (the breadline) while in the hall I had other students peddling apples and others sleeping under Hoover blankets (newspapers). The students waited in line and then came in one by one to the music of Woody Guthrie’s Dust Bowl Refugee playing in the background. Volunteers served each student soup and others cut bread. F.D.R. (Franklin Delano Roosevelt, played by another student) made a surprise appearance and went around from table to table shaking hands and giving words of inspiration.”

Another example of using hands on and artifacts was also related to the Great Depression. “We also made artifacts during the Great Depression unit. I started a junk drive and sent students home with flyers asking them to bring in junk, not trash, so that we could re-purpose it for a project. I went around to lumberyards and local businesses collecting materials. The students had a choice of either making art or improvised instruments. We had some really neat stuff. One student made a purse out of electrical tape, one group made a double neck cigar box guitar that actually played, someone made a snow globe out of a mason jar some figurines and glitter and another a xylophone by cutting pringles cans to different lengths and taping them together.”

Mr. Chapman lives in Tecumseh with his wife, Karissa, and their 2 year old daughter, Zailya. He has two dogs, an American Bulldog who is going on thirteen named Lazer (like the American gladiator) and a Pug two years old named Paczki (like the pastry).

In the past, Mr. Chapman and his wife have owned a hair salon in Tecumseh for more than 10 years called Galxi Salon. He loves spending time with his family and friends as well as enjoying music, movies and vintage mopeds.

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