Meet Mr. Watson!
A new school year is in full swing at Apex High. For some students and staff, this means returning to school after a much-needed summer vacation. For others, it means getting acclimated to a brand-new school. Apex High is welcoming several new teachers this year across the various programs available to students. Joining the art program this year is Mr. Watson, a first-year teacher with degrees in architecture, arts education, and metals.
Mr. Watson grew up in England and has previously lived in Texas, Pennsylvania, and Maryland before relocating to Cary, North Carolina. While he has previously held a variety of occupations, Mr. Watson has always been drawn to teaching. From adult studio classes at A.C. Moore to the Town of Cary Arts Center, he has always found ways to marry his love of education with his passion for art. In his new position at Apex High School, he is currently teaching Visual Arts Beginning. Next semester, he will transition into teaching Visual Arts Intermediate.
Mr. Watson enjoys working with a variety of media, including wood, metals, and oil paints. His first true experience with art came at a young age, when he had the opportunity to see Pablo Picasso’s “Weeping Woman.” He describes this experience as ““The first time where I really realized that art could be more than just a bowl of fruit or a portrait, and that there [was] this massive world of possibilities.”
This moment of realization translates directly into Mr. Watson’s philosophy as a teacher. For him, the most rewarding part of teaching art is the proverbial “lightbulb moment” when a student understands the concept that is being taught and is able to apply it for themselves. In a piece of advice for students, he emphasizes what he views as one of the most important aspects of learning:
“Ask questions. Ask questions of yourself. Ask questions of your neighbors, see how they’re doing things, why they’re making the choices they are. Ask your teachers. If you’re not sure about something or if you want to know a little bit more about a certain subject or a career, ask questions. Even if they don’t have the answers, they’ll get them for you.”
Mr. Watson finds himself in a unique situation as a teacher this year. While most Apex High teachers work out of a single classroom, Mr. Watson does not have a room of his own. Instead, he rotates from room to room during the other three art teachers’ planning periods. Although this arrangement is less than ideal, he emphasizes the importance of teamwork in making the transition from classroom to classroom as smooth as possible. Next semester, Mr. Watson will remain in room 1412 while fellow teacher Mr. Ferguson will be moving between classrooms.
Ms. Purtee, a veteran member of the arts department at Apex High, is excited to welcome Mr. Watson to the program:
“Mr. Watson is a great addition to the staff and has a fun English accent.”
Outside of school, Mr. Watson lives in Cary with his wife and four children as well as the family’s goldendoodle and bearded dragon. He has his own woodshop and metal shop where he frequently works on DIY projects such as woodworking, jewelry making, and silver casting.
The Apex High School community looks forward to welcoming Mr. Watson, and we can’t wait to see all he has to offer here at the Peak of Great Learning.