James Garritson has taught 7th or 8th grade history since 1998. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from California State Fullerton University, a Master of Science in Educational Technology from National University, a California Single Subject English Credential from National University, and a California Single Subject Social Science Supplemental Credential. Mr. Garritson taught 9th and 12th grade English at Buena Park High School during his student teaching years back in 1997. He was then hired in 1998 to to teach 7th grade English and History at Buena Park Junior High.
After two years of teaching in the Buena Park Union School District, Garritson moved in the summer of 2000 from Fullerton to Valley Center. He then taught 7th grade history at L.R. Green for four years, during the time it was still a K-8 school. Mr. Garritson had the great opportunity to become one of the original teachers to open Bear Valley Middle School on August 23, 2004. Here, he taught three groups of students both 7th and 8th grade history before the practice of looping ended in 2010. Mr. Garritson has now taught ten consecutive years of 8th grade American history and enjoys teaching the subject very much.
His passion for civics led him to run for office and get elected to the Valley Center Community Planning Group in November of 2014. James and his wife Archellyn are blessed with four children: Rebecca (8), James (4), Linda (2), and Archelle (2 months).
James Garritson hopes that students studying history will use their knowledge of the past and create solutions to current problems facing government at the local, state, and national levels. The social sciences are a passion for Mr. Garritson because he realizes students have the opportunity to learn valuable lessons from their knowledge of the past and ensure that "We the People of the United States" will continue to "secure the Blessings of Liberty." It is his desire that once former students grow up and leave behind their textbooks, assignments, assessments, classrooms, and schools, they will remain lifelong learners, critical thinkers, and virtuous Americans.
According to Mr. Garritson, "It is a privilege to teach students the origins of their inalienable rights and how our nation's present prosperity was born out of both struggle and triumph. It is my hope that every student will always value hard work, the ideals of liberty, and civic virtue."
Mr. Garritson A.S.B. Staff Survey
- Name: James Michael Garritson
- Job on Campus: Eighth Grade Social Studies Teacher
- What is your favorite color? variety
- If you could live anywhere in the world, where would it be? A private island
- What is your favorite singer/ artist/ group? Meatloaf
- What is your favorite TV show? Get Smart
- What is your favorite sports team? none
- What is your favorite candy/snack? chocolate
- What is your favorite movie? Braveheart
- What is your favorite magazine? a variety of online resources
- If you could be a superhero for one day, who would you be? Iron Man
- What is your favorite animal? dog
- If you could have any other job, what would it be? digital designer
- If you could be any Disney character, who would you be and why? Scrooge McDuck. In the cartoon show Duck Tales, Scrooge is shown to work very hard prior to earning and managing a vast fortune. McDuck soon learns the valuable lesson that his true wealth is found in his family and friends instead of material possessions. He promotes individualism, entrepreneurship, hard work, frugality, adventure, education, physical fitness, and virtue. While Scrooge in the historical Disney canon is sometimes shown miserly, the Carl Barks and Duck Tales versions show his numerous good traits and qualities. Scrooge learns that using his wealth for good gives him great joy in numerous episodes of Duck Tales. Unlike numerous Disney characters who are born into royalty, Scrooge was born into poverty and must struggle to keep and use his vast fortune for the betterment of his family, society, and himself.
- What is your favorite holiday? Thanksgiving
- What is your favorite store? Costco
- If you had one wish, what would it be? I would wish that all evil, sickness, and death would instantly end. In such a state, people would finally gain the purest form of liberty and could fully pursue their human creativity.
- What is your favorite quote? “Every man dies. Not every man really lives.” – William Wallace in Braveheart
- What is your favorite Website? Youtube
- What would your perfect day be? Eternity
- Tell us about yourself. My love of liberty and disdain for tyranny are philosophical foundations that direct my life. Liberty shapes my faith and the foundations of my family. History, politics, economics, and geography are topics that interest me both as a teacher and lifelong student. Cross-country running is a sport that connects me to my childhood and continues to help shape my mind, body, and spirit. My favorite activity is spending quality time with my wife and three children Rebecca, James, and Linda. Watching movies, listening to Audible or Youtube content creators, reading historical books and cartoon strips, spending time with my dogs, using technology, working on home and land projects, and striving to learn new things are pastimes I always enjoy. Many activities I enjoyed during my youth still interest me such as drawing, creating comic characters, watching cartoons, running, and spending time with my large family. I am the oldest child in a family of fourteen children. I have nine brothers and four sisters.
- Spouse? Archellyn
- Kids or Grandkids? Rebecca, James, Linda and Archelle
- Pets? Yorkshire Terriors named Romulus Maximus and Octavia Maxima
- Which college(s) did you attend? Mt. San Antonio College, University of Alabama, California State Fullerton University, National University
- What is your hometown? Fullerton