A twelve-month program sounds like a fast master’s degree, wouldn’t you say? Yes, it implied a demanding schedule.1 On top of which, I was assigned an early-morning Seminary class, as if I weren’t already sufficiently occupied. The summer was stuffed with intensive orientations and required Ed-School course-work. Meanwhile, the program lined us up with internships in area high schools. And meanwhile, the Church saw fit to call me as a Seminary teacher.
In the school year, my day started with a 6 a.m. drive to the chapel in Menlo Park to teach Seminary. More about that later, with one of the year’s truly lovely stories. Then home for breakfast and weather recitation. Next, off via carpool to Capuchino High School in Millbrae, up by the San Francisco International Airport, where I did my student teaching from early drafts of Harvard Project Physics. About which, also, more later. Then, back to Stanford for more classes. By now, these included the somewhat more diversified course work required for one or more “teaching minors.” Mine, not surprisingly, were French and mathematics.

Dr. Dwight W. Allen, as he appears now, according to his
web page
You will not be shocked, perhaps, that my most memorable academic experiences at Stanford came in this context. “History of the French Language” and “Sixteenth Century French Poetry” stick in the mind as high points, half a century later.

Dwight Allen, director of our program, identified a group of us—on what criteria, I was never clear—as his special seminar group. We’d meet at his house, an evening or two a week, to imbibe sparkling cider and indulge sparkling opinions on educational issues. Most stimulating. The ideas, not the beverage: Dwight was a high-ranking Baha'i and at least as abstemious as y’rs truly.

And then, at the end of September, Rick came on the scene, providing our ultimate curricular element.

Need we remark that, for us, this year was a major juggling experience?

1I don’t mean to neglect or minimize the parallel pressures that devolved on Valerie. By dint of her sweet creativity and frugality, we got through the tight budgets and the long hours with a lot of grace, even as she faced each day the new challenges of pregnancy and, then, of lively offspring. She’ll still tell you she loved being pregnant. Good thing; it’s been a big piece of her life. She’ll have to provide an authoritative account from her point of view. From mine, for what that matters, she seemed to spend a lot of time talking with her friends Linda and Glenda. Wonder whether she can pull up their family names, this long after the fact…
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