Traveling teacher looks towards more

Behind the Whiteboard: Mari Foster


Stephanie Salas, The Freelancer

La Serna social science teacher Mari Foster.

Stephanie Salas, Opinion Editor

At one point or another, every student at La Serna has heard of, seen, or been taught by Ms. Mari Foster. Undoubtedly legendary, her facial gestures and witty rhetoric have played a key role in the continuous respect held for Foster. Whether she’s teaching U.S History or A.P. Psychology, her skill in teaching is unshakable.

What are some of your hobbies?

Reading. Gardening. Traveling. And working out.

How often do you work out?

Five days a week.

Where have you traveled?

Not as many places as I’d like to. I’ve been to Canada and Mexico multiple times and many American states. I’ve never left the western hemisphere.

What is the funniest memory you have as a teacher?

There are so many. Well, the story I tell repeatedly is about the first year I was a teacher when a couple of the 8th grade boys cut my little head out of the yearbook and pasted it on top of a scantily clad pin up picture that they had cut out of a Playboy magazine… and then they put a nice cardboard backing on it and colored it in and passed it around amongst the 8th grade boys. And the principal, who was a nun, said “Oh, dear God, that’s not you, is it?”… I kept the little pin up thing.

Do you still have it to this day?

You know I looked for it the other day and I couldn’t find it. So, I think at some point I threw it away.

How would you describe yourself in high school?

I was a nerd. I liked to study and read and I didn’t talk to people if I could help it.

What was your high school GPA?


Who is your idol, if you have one?

Walter Cronkite. He was a reporter and news anchor for CBS News through the 60’s and 70’s who gave us a picture of the world in a very confusing time. He was reassuring and challenging at the same time and because of him we couldn’t hide from all of the traumas that were happening and he led us to question what we were doing, for example, in Vietnam. Just the sound of his voice brings back that whole time period for me.

What is one goal you would like to accomplish in your lifetime that you haven’t already?

Go to all of the places I’ve been teaching about.

Why did you decide to become a teacher?

…Because I wanted to change the world. That’s all I have to say.

What is your new year’s resolution?

To bring my own bags into the grocery store instead of using plastic.