“Guten tag!” says Mr. Sondermeyer

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Madison Sondermeyer , Out and About

Who would have thought an average pipefitter would one day become the new high school German teacher? Mr. Sondermeyer didn’t know exactly what he wanted to do for his career, but he knew he couldn’t stay a pipefitter. Mostly everyone in his family was a teacher or had some experience working with kids in a classroom, and two years ago, a family friend informed Mr. S that both Macopin Middle School and the high school needed more German teachers. Given that he was a straight-A student at the top of his classes at Montclair University, and had gotten a scholarship to study in Austria for a year, Mr. S knew teaching German would be the job for him.
When Mr. S heard about the job opening for a German teacher, he did not refuse. Within the next few months he had a meeting set up and he was teaching classes for half a year. He is now a full-time German teacher with two classes at Macopin Middle School, one at West Milford High School, and two at Pompton Lakes High School.
Mr. Sondermeyer has been very pleased with his new career path, saying, “Teaching isn’t what I thought it would be; I thought there would be a lot more work. In an office you can work for years and not see results, but when you are in the classroom every day with those kids, and put the effort in, you can really see the growth and results of how truly impactful you can be on people. As corny as that is, I do have to admit, it makes the job so much more interesting.” His fantastic skills at speaking fluent German didn’t go to waste after all.
Freshman Anastasia Hamlin says, “Mr. Sondermeyer taught me a lot in the one year that I had him. He cares about his students and inspires them to learn. He’s a fun teacher, yet you still get work done. He’s one of my favorite teachers and I’m glad I’ve had the pleasure of knowing him and being in his class for German.” He loves working with people, but when it comes to teaching, he prefers to work alone, although he does consider other people’s ideas.
His favorite color is olive green and he even got an olive green bag for school. Mr. Sondermeyer loves his family and friends, and he enjoys spending time with them when he is free, whether it’s just going on drives, having family get-togethers, game nights, or taking family trips to Cape Cod or Lake George. Mr. Sondermeyer loves music and has a very eclectic taste in artists. He listens to an array of foreign singers including artists who sing in German, French, Italian, and Russian.
His biggest pet peeve is when people chewwith their mouth open while they eat; he can’t stand it. Surprisingly, even though he is only in his 20s, he rarely ever uses social media for anything, “It’s just not for me,’’ he says. If his family were to describe him, they would say he is awkward, because he is self-conscious sometimes when he does or says certain things. Even if he can be awkward, if his friends, students, or coworkers were to describe him, they would say he is a great listener, and gives great advice, and that he is patient, diligent, and outgoing. If you see him the hallway be sure to say “Guten Tag!”