Ms. Gretchen YounghansBA English, Northern Arizona UniversityMA English, Northern Arizona UniversitySecondary English Teaching Certification, Northern Arizona UniversityNational Board Certified Teacher in Adolescent and Young Adult English Language Arts2018-19 CoursesAP English Literature and CompositionAlpine Institute English 12College and Career Ready English 12
Welcome to class. We’re going to have a great time. I became an English teacher because great literature rocked my world in the best of ways when I was a teenager. When the world seemed cruel, my life felt confusing, my face was plagued with acne, and the teenage social realm felt impossible, I turned to poetry and all the heavies in literary fiction. They pulled me out of my middle teen years malaise, my melodramatic meloncholy, and my mopey myopic moodiness. I mean, seriously: after grappling along with Raskolnikov in his sweaty monomaniacal nightmares of conscience, just about any of the unpleasantries in one’s own teenage life seem preferable. And classical tormented love poetry: don’t get me going on the passion of Keats for his muse, Fanny Brawne! The dude gets it on the subject of infatuation with a bright star that your friends just can’t comprehend. I can’t wait to share all of this good stuff with you! Really, it may save you, too.
Besides great literature, my other great love has been my experience in the deserts and mountains of the Southwest. I had to abruptly switch gears to long days indoors teaching after spending ten years guiding rivers while getting college degrees, so I am elated to be given the opportunity to blend outdoors passions with teaching in my Alpine English 12 classes. Students can experience the authentic blend of an academic ELA class with the love of our landscape and the ethic of protecting it that guides many of our lives. For more information about Alpine Institute at FHS, click here. For FAQs about Alpine English 12, click here.
When I’m not in room 402, I am regularly spotted in local grocery stores wrangling my three sons before we attract stern looks from the management or looking on apologetically in restaurants while the wait staff mops up a drink spilled on the floor by one of my wild boys. Several times that wait staff has been my former student now attending NAU, and in that case, I've looked on extra apologetically. Besides disastrous domestic outings to Target etc., the outdoors are where you’ll find me, playing in rivers, deserts, and forests with my husband, sons, and dog. It’s where we’re happiest.