Degrees and Certifications:
B.A. Brigham Young University M.A. Northern Arizona University
Mr. Robert Goss
I am a native of Arizona. I was born in Tombstone. I have lived in Sierra Vista, Benson, Willcox, and several places in the Phoenix area. I enjoyed school as a child. I played several sports and even received a scholarship to play baseball in college. I had enjoyed school and sports so much that I thought that maybe I would like to be a P.E. teacher and a coach. But, a life-changing event happened when I was 20 years old. I received a calling to be a missionary and was sent to Argentina. There I learned Spanish fluently and I found out that I really enjoyed the Spanish-speaking people and culture. I continued with my dream to be a teacher and a coach, but then I decided that I would like to teach Spanish even more than P.E.
I got my A.A from Glendale C.C. before my mission. Afterwards, I got my B.A. Degree in Spanish from Brigham Young University and my M.A. Degree in Educational Counseling from Northern Arizona University.
I taught Spanish at the Missionary Training Center in Provo, Utah as I worked on my degree. I got my first public high school teaching job in Idaho Falls, Idaho, where I taught for two years. During a summer vacation when I returned home to Phoenix, Arizona, I saw a Spanish teaching opening at the high school I had attended. So that started my first of 28 years where I taught in the Phoenix Union High School District (1 year at Carl Hayden H.S., 1 year at Alhambra H.S. and 28 years at Maryvale H.S.) I also taught private Spanish classes. (about 10 years) I started 9 years ago to teach private English classes to native Spanish speakers. This is my 9th year at Deer valley High School.
I have taught all levels of Spanish from the beginning levels to Advanced Placement. I have also taught Dual Enrollment where my students not only receive high school credit, but also university level credit for the language that they are learning.
In May, 2012, it seemed like a good financial decision with health benefits to take the retirement offered by the district. (It was a good decision, but I didn't necessarily really want to quit teaching!) It was even a better decision to come back to teaching this year in the Deer Valley District. I have my benefits and now I am able to continue working with the students that I have enjoyed doing so much in the past. I have now taught Spanish for 37 years.
I lived in Argentina for two years as a missionary. I have lived in Costa Rica for two summers. I have traveled extensively in Spain and Mexico. I have also visited Peru, Colombia, Ecuador, Canada, and many parts of the United States.
I like to tell stories and to write about my adventures in other countries. I have published a book entitled "Confessions of a Gringo Spanish Teacher". In this book I share with my students the exotic, exciting and often humorous cultural adventures where I was a foreigner trying to survive, to take part in and to adapt to different cultural situations. Over the years I have written about 60 situations where I have lived and learned about my Spanish-speaking neighbors and friends and their cultures.
I truly believe that having an ability of the Spanish language is a huge advantage in the society that we live in in Phoenix. It is very useful in the neighborhoods in which we live. It can give you advantages in the work force as you are able to serve more clients and you will therefore be more valuable to your employer and your clients because of this ability. An ability to use Spanish opens many travel opportunities that are nearby. Spanish can open a whole new world of quality literature, music and art opportunities.
I like Spanish and I like working with high school students. That leads to an exciting and fulfilling existence for me!