Teacher Spotlight: Dayton King, math teacher at CAST Tech in SAISD

San Antonio teacher pushes students to work on their critical thinking

SAN ANTONIO – In our teacher spotlight series we introduce you to local teachers who have gone above and beyond the call of education to help students in their classroom excel.

" I love math and I love people who are also excited to learn about math,” Dayton King, a math teacher at CAST Tech High School in the San Antonio Independent School District said. “Whenever you are doing something you enjoy and you’re talking about something you enjoy, with people who also enjoy talking about it, like why wouldn’t you want to keep that conversation going even if it’s on Friday mornings and on Saturdays for calculus?”

This year, King answered the call –- and because of unique scheduling circumstances volunteered to spend his Friday and Saturday mornings teaching.

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“I knew so many of my students wanted to be engineers or doctors or go into professions that clearly need calculus as a part of their profession. And I thought this would be a good way to help them keep going, even in this weird year,” King said.

It’s a way he continues his student’s education. He makes them think on Zoom, the white board and the chess board.

“I enjoy playing chess and some students really like the strategy involved. It’s the idea that that’s a competition where it’s truly a fair playing field. I can bring nothing extra to it. You can bring nothing extra to it. It’s just your ability to think into the future and minds against each other,” King said.

It’s also a way of connecting, competing and learning.

“So I haven’t been able to beat him yet, but it’s still really fun,” Jonathan Rodriguez, a student of King said.

At the end of the year, obviously the goal is for have students better understand math, but for King it is also so much bigger than that.

“What I really want them to walk away with is critical thinking. I always try to present all the different math, not as here’s another subject with numbers and rules you don’t understand, but like what is the overarching idea of this branch of math?” King said.

About the Authors

Max Massey is the GMSA weekend anchor and a general assignments reporter. Max has been live at some of the biggest national stories out of Texas in recent years, including the Sutherland Springs shooting, Hurricane Harvey and the manhunt for the Austin bomber. Outside of work, Max follows politics and sports, especially Penn State, his alma mater.

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