John R. Simmons is my name. I started the Ph.D. program in Mathematics Education summer semester 2004. How did I find myself here at this time? That is a good question. But, I am happy to be here. After all, what else might I be doing at this time.

Born October 7, 1949 in Brooks County Georgia. The delivery was accomplished by a mid-wife, Mrs. Poly Jackson. Mrs. Poly delivered all the children of my father Conley L. Simmons and mother Alice S. Simmons. There were four boys and four girls. We all grew up on a farm in South Georgia. We were share croppers until 1963. In 1963 my two older sisters graduated college as teachers. Seven of us attended college, with 6 obtaining degrees. Five of us are (were) teachers.

In 1967 I entered Albany State College with a major in mathematics. I played saxophone in the marching band my freshman year and played on the varsity baseball team my senior year--when I received a letter for my performance as an outfielder. My graduation took place in August 1971 when I received a B. A. degree in mathematics with emphasis in chemistry. Over the next 6 years I taught mathematics at Coffee Junior High School where--for the first two or three years--I learned to be a teacher, gained T-4 certification, dabbled in farming with my father, found an interest in chess and began work on a masters degree in Mathematics Education at Valdosta State College.

As I was completing a masters at Valdosta State College in 1977, I applied for and was accepted for a position to teach mathematics at Swainboro Vocational Technical School--where I taught mathematics for the next 26 years. Because space does not permit a recount of my experiences at Swainsboro Technical School, I'll just say that I loved my work there.

After retiring in June 2003, I took a year off while deciding what to do with the rest if my life.


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