Master Teacher 2015: Mario d'Azzo
Posted 05/30/2015 03:00PM

By Charles Skipper, Headmaster

Article from Fall TASIS Today 2015

When I think of a master teacher, images of smiling and hardworking students, much laughter matched with much learning in a classroom or on the sidewalk, occasionally a tear or two, and passion for our calling — those are the images that come to my mind.

Plus a new one; my image of a master teacher now includes serenading students, and in my mind’s eye I will always see Mario at the Senior Prom bringing the house down.

As legions of students, including faculty members, will attest, Mario’s love of teaching and the Italian language is manifest in all he does, and it serves to both inspire and motivate them in their studies. He is a Renaissance man whose musical talents, athletic interests, and commitment to family and TASIS flow together in a life being well led. 

One of my personal measures of a teacher is his or her response to addressing a challenging student. A master teacher, to my mind, is a person whose repertoire of teaching tools to reach a student, any student, is matched with a passionate commitment to reach that challenging child and help her grow. Mario is such a teacher, and demonstrates that range and belief in his students daily. 

“As regards my own philosophy of education, I consider myself an open and flexible person, conscious that patience and enthusiasm beside a solid preparation can be a guarantee of high results.”

Patience, enthusiasm, solid preparation, and great results — a fitting description of my friend Mario d’Azzo, this year’s Khan- Page Master Teacher.

The Khan-Page TASIS Master Teacher Award is named after two outstanding teachers who taught for many years in both TASIS schools: the late Akbar Khan (in mathematics) and Max P. Page (in English). The award recognizes an outstanding teacher who represents a high standard of professional pedagogy, subject- area knowledge, a capacity to convey the joy and importance of learning to students, and fundamental sympathy with the aims and goals of TASIS as expressed in the Paideia.