30 Years of Great Teaching Through Intellect and Kindness

Grace Tague, Editor in Chief

“Rock on” is a popular saying of Mrs. Calabrese’s that any students past or present would recognize. After teaching at Wantagh for 33 years, Mrs. Calabrese will retire July 1.

Mrs. Calabrese graduated from Stony Brook University. She majored in earth science and minored in math and biology. Once she graduated from Stony Brook Mrs. Calabrese joined the staff at Wantagh. Having cousins who were very happy going to school in Wantagh, Mrs. Calabrese knew how much of a wonderful district Wantagh was.

Mrs. Calabrese started teaching at Wantagh in 1985. She decided to become a teacher because she always loved school and learning. She also always felt it was a privilege to become a teacher.

When Mrs. Calabrese first started teaching at Wantagh, she was the only earth science teacher in the entire district. Over the years Mrs. Calabrese has also taught eighth grade science, chemistry, and math. Earth science has always been her passion, though.

Calabrese loved teaching at Wantagh High School. She says that Wantagh has “great families, great parents, and great students.” Her favorite part about teaching at Wantagh was the interactions with the students. She says they always make her smile and bring so much energy.

Mrs. Calabrese recommends teaching as a career for her students. She says, “there are so many positives and gifts you get back from it.” Her advice for students that want to become teachers is to enjoy your subject and to care about your students.

Mrs. Calabrese has made a lasting effect on the faculty and students at Wantagh High School, and the Wantagh community as a whole, for the better. She has taught so many valuable life lessons that students will carry with them for the rest of their lives.

“Mrs. Calabrese is one of those teachers that you will never forget as you grow up,” says senior Patrick Daly. “Her sense of humor was my favorite part about her class because even when the classwork got hard, she was always able to create laugher in the room as well. I had Mrs. Calabrese as a freshman. Now, I am a senior leaving Wantagh High School with her as she retires and I still remember great memories after 4 years. I wish her a happy and and healthy retirement.”

“Lydia is….without question, one of the finest Earth Science teachers Wantagh H.S. has ever had,” says Principal Carolyn Breivogel. “Although unassuming, Lydia diligently and carefully taught thousands of 9th grade students in preparing to pass the rigorous Earth Science Regents for more than 30 years. I admire her intellect and her kindness.”

For Mrs. Calabrese’s last year she says, “I have the most amazing students, they are very thoughtful and considerate to each other and myself.”

She says she will miss the students and her colleagues the most. Mrs. Calabrese says that it doesn’t feel like she has been teaching for that long; to her, time went by very fast. Mrs. Calabrese’s retirement plans are to spend more time with her family and friends. She also plans to visit a lot of national parks.