Archive for Thursday, September 8, 2005

Familiar face moves to Elementary School

September 8, 2005

Many people in the community may recognize Lee Matzeder even though he has only taught at Lansing Elementary School for a few weeks.

Matzeder, a new physical education teacher, graduated from Leavenworth High School and has lived in the area most of his life. He moved to Lansing four years ago.

Before coming to Lansing Elementary, Matzeder taught physical education at Immaculata High School and Xavier Middle School in Leavenworth for two years. In his 13 years of teaching, Matzeder also taught physical education at Christ the King and Cathedral of Saint Peter elementary schools and spent two years teaching basic math and reading in a GED program at Lansing Correctional Facility.

He also has taught private swimming lessons in the summer for seven years.

Matzeder said knowing teachers and students from living in Lansing and from teaching swim lessons helped him to become comfortable stepping into his new job at Lansing Elementary. He said he has known coaches Chris Elliott and Julie Slater for years. His fellow Lansing elementary physical education teacher, Cheryl Orlowski, taught his wife, Matzeder said.

Despite the time Matzeder has spent in Lansing, he said he was a far cry from knowing all, or even most, of his colleagues and 500 students when school began last month.

"I'm looking forward to the day when I know all the teachers' and all the kids' names," he said.

As if teaching 500 elementary students weren't enough, Matzeder also will be coaching eighth-grade football and wrestling at Lansing Middle School and acting as an assistant coach for wrestling at Lansing High School.

This will be his 20th year coaching wrestling, Matzeder said.

Matzeder has played slow-pitch softball for about 20 years and he hopes to coach softball in the spring, but positions have not been assigned yet, he said.

Despite having so many students in his charge, Matzeder said he tried to provide individual attention.

"I feel every child who comes in needs equal time and attention," he said.

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