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My Breck Story: Silence Is a Powerful Tool

"I have many wonderful memories of Breck. From the friends I made, to playing sports, to musicals, and to senior speeches. But what made all of these amazing memories possible was the faculty. All of the faculty impacted me in positive ways — like Mr. Taaffe, for instance.

In addition to learning history from Mr. Taaffe, I learned about quietness. When the class got rowdy or even sluggish, he would open the window (yes, even in the middle of winter), turn off the lights and we would have a moment of quietness. The cold air was to stimulate our minds and the darkness was to relax and refocus us. I learned from Mr. Taaffe that silence is a powerful tool. But I never did learn to like the cold.

I went on to be a teacher myself. I have strived to be like Breck teachers. I push my students to always do their best. I let them know it is okay to fail as long as they learn from their mistakes. When a student says “I don’t know” and I remain silent, they realize they do know. I treat my students with kindness and respect. And most importantly, I hope to make learning fun!"

— Anne “Pokey” Phillips | Class of 1984