CFNN Reporter Chloe Bloomfield
Congratulations to Mr. Allen West, the CFNN Teacher of the Week. Mr. West is a student favorite at Cape Fear. He is the Ag Aps teacher whose coworkers and friends alike would say he is “laid back like a turtle on a fence post,” yet he’s still a very hard worker who likes to stay busy.
Mr. West is extremely interactive with his students. Working in Ag gives him a unique opportunity to teach and show his students what to do by example instead in a lecture format. It is easy to see direct results because of how hands-on the course work is for his classes. Both in and out of the classroom, Mr. West likes to be competitive, and that translates to playing a lot of games in class such as “trashketball” to make the students feel more compelled to work.
Mr. West has a very organized yet relaxed classroom he describes as “a comfortable place that gets lots of work done, so it doesn’t feel like so much work.” He believes that you can buckle down and get a lot of work done and still have fun while doing it.
Being an old-school kind of teacher, online learning was difficult for Mr West. As much as he loves technology it was really out of his comfort zone not being able to physically interact with his students everyday. Little things like giving a student a fist bump after class or waving at former students in the hallway between classes were absent from Mr. West’s life.
He faced the same problems as many other teachers faced, where the majority of the material he taught did not translate well to online. There was only so much to do, but he worked very hard to keep his students engaged and encouraged them to come back in person.
Outside of school, Mr. West loves to spend time with his wife and two teenage sons. He is the pastor of a small church and enjoys doing missionary work. He also has a small farm where he can grow most of his own food. This keeps West extremely busy outside of school, but he wouldn’t have it any other way.
West says “I am happiest when I am digging in the dirt, riding my tractor, or playing with my bees.”
Mr. West loves to stay active and believes it’s very important for the mind and soul as well as your body. He has run many 10ks, four mini triathlons, and two half marathons in the past, but now he stays active by working on his farm. West also loves baseball. He is an NC State and an Atlanta Braves fan.
West can frequently be found on social media posting about his farm, his bees, and his love for teaching and students. His positive energy is infectious, and it resonates with everyone around him. Students and Coworkers alike enjoy being around Mr. West.
“That guy is just an excellent teacher,” says English teacher Brittain Phillips. “He always has something interesting going on! Baby chicks, bees, flowers, vegetables: absolutely everything!”
It’s easy to see why Mr. West is so important to Cape Fear. West shows his students through his down-to-earth personality and hard work ethic, that if you put your mind to a task it can get done!