Lion Pride Times

Lion Pride Times

Lion Pride Times

Meet Mr.DeBar!

  The world language department welcomed a new teacher for French this year, Lance DeBar. He is a French man (who’s not actually from France) with a lot to say and a long, interesting story.

  Currently, as the new French teacher, DeBar hopes to get students to understand that language isn’t simply a graduation requirement; it is a connection to the rest of the world. “I call on all of my students to become linguists so they value language.” He channels his background in social-emotional learning when describing to his students why language is so important. “I try to have students think about the language they use. We practice really early on how you listen, like where your headspace is…I know [language] is important because essentially, no one takes [it] away from you, [it] is yours…you can’t buy it, it’s always there, it’s whether or not it’s activated.” 

  He tells all of his pupils that they need to activate their language skills to value it truly. One other aspiration DeBar has as a teacher at Mountain View High School is to be a support system for everybody. He points out his posters outside of the classroom as an example. The posters are the ‘Mental Health Matters’ posters covered in positive affirmations written down by all of his students. “I just wanna know people have a safe space to talk about things. I want to encourage students to talk about things that are more meaningful in life.”

  As a person, DeBar has had a long, winding path to the spot he is in now. Firstly, he is not just a language teacher. He also has a health degree and a background in social-emotional learning. French is his favorite, though. “With French, you can teach everything like music, philosophy, literature.” While learning and growing up, he lived in numerous places and spent quite a large chunk of time in Europe. “I studied in Minnesota, and then I ended up studying a year in a French university in Pau, France…I ended up working in the French-speaking part of Switzerland for four years…I taught at Brussels for one year [in Belgium], and I did one season in Chamonix, France.” 

  During his time in these European places, he also had an extensive sports career in which he did and taught skiing and played soccer and hockey. After his exploration in Europe, he came back to the States, but this time to a new state, Colorado. This move to an unfamiliar state was due to the love he will forever hold in his heart for the Swiss Alps. All of this still isn’t everything: in order to cover that, we’d need a whole book. 

  The new French teacher is incredibly excited about the opportunity presented to him here at MVHS. As a member of our community, he wants all students to hear this message: “Please believe in yourself. Please know that life isn’t perfect. Understand that life can feel really hard and difficult, and it may get even harder and more difficult, but there is a universal law for your headspace whereby it will get better. Lean into that. Believe in that. Because that’s what keeps us together and optimistic and creative and imaginative and all these other beautiful things. That is life.”

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About the Contributor
Jamie Wilson
Jamie Wilson, Senior Reporter
Hi, My name is Jamie. I am a senior in the LISA program. My passion area is writing, so I love the opportunities journalism is giving me.

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