EagleCorps: Family in the Classroom

Brooke/StoryCorps: Hello, and welcome to EagleCorps, a weekly podcast produced by the Talon inspired by NPR’s StoryCorps. I’m Brooke Yungfleisch and today we’ll be talking with Emily Warren and her mom, Ms. Lisa Bregar, who is a math teacher at Oak Park.

Lisa Bregar: Hello, I am Lisa Bregar and I’m here with my daughter.

Emily Bregar: Hi, I’m Emily Warren.

Lisa Bregar: We’re here to talk about what it’s like to (for me) have my daughter in my class with me, and what it’s like for her to have her mom as a teacher. So the background: ever since Emily was young she said she wanted to be in my class, and I thought as she got older she would definitely change her mind when she became a teenager, but she didn’t. So, when she got to her junior year, she still said she wanted to be in Math Analysis, so here we are.

Emily Bregar: Yeah um, I think it’s kinda funny because whenever I’m in your class, I kind of just see you as my math teacher. I don’t like, forget you’re my mother, but it just doesn’t quite process in my head. Like you’re either just my math teacher or just my mother, and I kinda thought that was funny.

Lisa Bregar: Yeah, I don’t think it’s any different having her in my class versus other students. One thing that is different is that she’s kind of had a built-in tutor at home all these years and I told her that if she was going to be in my class she had to be treated like everyone else. She had to come to seventh period and I wouldn’t tutor her at home, so that’s been definitely different for me, I don’t know if that mattered to you at all.

Emily Bregar: Yeah, I feel like I get asked a lot: “Oh, what’s it like having your mom as the teacher?” or “What’s it like being in her class?” and it’s honestly just like any other math class. I guess it could be different because we live together and I see you all the time, and then it’s not really all that much different than any other math class I’ve been in. Yeah, I just thought it would be a lot more different, more like not what I would expect, rather than the way it is. You’re just like any other math teacher I’ve had.

Lisa Bregar: Yeah, it helps that you just do your work and you’re not a discipline problem at all, so we can just function as normal student-teacher, I think.

Emily Bregar: Yeah, people will say like, “Oh, well if you’re having math trouble then just ask your mom at home!” and I’m like, “No, I can’t.” Is it against the rules?

Lisa Bregar: No, it’s just that in my opinion, that’s just how it needs to be so that you’re not getting an unfair advantage over other people in the class.

Emily Bregar: Yeah, I get that question a lot. People say like, “Oh, can’t your mom help you with the math you struggle with at home?” and yeah, no.

Lisa Bregar: It is that sometimes I have a little less patience with you than other people.

Emily Bregar: Yeah. Today I asked a question about a math problem and you were like, “That makes zero sense!” and I was like, “”I’m sorry!” But yeah, definitely.

Lisa Bregar:But when you’re a teacher, it’s like all day long patience, patience, patience. And a lot of times you have to just hold in stuff. And it’s not that I unleash on you, or anything, but…

Emily Bregar: Yeah, like sometimes I can barely deal with being around two people all day, and you teach, what? Like, 150 students all year?

Lisa Bregar:Something around there, on average.

Emily Bregar: I don’t know how you do it. But yeah, I always feel like I want to be a math teacher sometimes, too, and you’re like “Just don’t do it because I’m a math teacher, just do it because it’s what you like to do.” Yeah, people always think it’s kind of funny that I like math, because it’s not really the most popular subject for teenagers, but I’ve always found it easy and fun to go through.

Brooke/StoryCorps:Thank you for listening to this week’s EagleCorps podcast, and stay tuned for more weekly updates. If you’d like to be involved in a podcast, feel free to sign us for an interview session by clicking the link below. We’d like to thank NPR for being the inspiration for this podcast, as well as Tony Peluce, Emily Warren, and Ms. Lisa Bregar.