Hirshman Shows Passion Through History, Economics

photo courtesy of d120.org

photo courtesy of d120.org

Caleb Kowalewski , Staff Reporter

Andrew Hirshman stood up, previously reclined in his chair, and walked up to the front of the classroom. He got straight to business, asking his students to take out their notebooks. He then told the class to make a map of the world with as much detail as possible.

For most of the students this was easier said than done, but once everyone tried their best to draw seven different blobs on a piece of paper for five minutes straight, he challenged the class to time him.

He claimed he could trace a rough draft of a world map in less than 30 seconds.

Everyone stopped their attempted mapmaking and looked up at where he was zipping around the board, drawing distinct continents and even sparing time to add in some islands.

Students were amazed, and that was how he started his lesson for AP World that day.

“I have great conversations and learn from every group I teach,” he said. “I probably know more ‘lingo’ of today’s youth than people my age since I deal with all of you.”

He explained how he learns from every class, not just educationally but generationally, which he feels makes him more relatable to today’s students.

He also has a son around the age of a freshman, so this relationship helps him know what is going on in the ‘teen culture’ while he teaches a college-level class to teenagers.

“I’ve always loved to learn quite a bit,” he said. “My passion for teaching has developed as I’ve taught, so I think I’ve become more passionate about teaching than I was when I first began teaching.”

Hirshman graduated with a master’s degree from Northwestern University and continued on to work as a teacher educator at Northwestern. He then was called to be an AP teacher at MHS.

He said he thinks all these advanced college-level classes are very important for freshmen students because he believes it prepares them for later college classes.

Along with his college-level courses, he also teaches economics– a topic about which he is passionate.

“I actually trade foreign currencies, so maybe people would guess that because I’m an economics teacher,” he mentioned.

He also said that if given the chance, he would love to teach a philosophy course. In the meantime, he tries to tie in philosophy with his economics and AP World courses—a combination of all his interests and passions.