Stormin' Bob Swanson

Blogging Bob

The student becomes the teacher

emerson family school

Several months ago, fresh from recovering from a “breakthrough case” of COVID, I lamented a bit about the relative unimportance (in the grand scheme of things) of what I do — whether as a teacher, musician or children’s entertainer.

This week I was reminded, on a couple of occasions, that I have made favorable impressions on students. The first was when, clothes shopping with my wife, I could hear one of my own songs playing in the store. Confused, I looked around for the source and I saw, holding up a phone and grinning at me, a former community college student, Alex. He was with his fiancĂ©e, recognized me, remembered that I used to play my weather songs in class, and pulled up one of my videos on YouTube. It was nice to get a chance to catch up — he now has a successful career in insurance and will soon be a married man.

I also was contacted by a former MSU student — currently a student teacher at Emerson Family School in Starkville, MS — asking if I would be a guest in her pre-school classroom.

Kyla Puryear, a former student, is Stormin’ Bob’s dance partner for “The Weather Wiggle” on Tuesday, March 8, 2022, at Emerson Family School in Starkville, MS.

It amazes me how my students have caused me to be a better teacher over the years. Teaching fluid dynamics concepts such as density and Pascal’s law to pre-schoolers can be a challenge. The important thing is that some of my fascination and curiosity with the natural world rubs off on them and perhaps inspires future inquiry and discovery.

I’m so flattered that Kyla invited me. Impressions and exposure are important — I made a good enough impression on her as a student that she, as a teacher, wanted to her own students to get a chance to catch my act.

Want to catch my act this summer? I finally have a name for the tour — “Dive into Science with Stormin’ Bob Swanson” — to go along with the “Oceans of Possibilities” summer reading program theme. Here is the list of current dates/times for upcoming shows.