Ms. Castine’s 15 Minutes of Fame!


High School Social Studies teacher Ms. Castine shines that bright smile that inspires all of her students.

Sasha Legagneur, Editor-in-Chief

Undoubtedly a beloved teacher, Ms. Castine is a prized possession here at Somerset Academy Canyons. Ms. Castine teaches High School Social Studies, namely United States History and Sociology. She started her teaching career four years ago when a middle school gave her a chance to pursue what would later become her niche. 

Ms. Castine was born on the west coast of Florida in Tarpon Springs. She has a fraternal twin sister named Keiley and a younger brother named Johnny. Known as the “ Mean Castine”, she expresses that her father was the person who engraved the value of perseverance in her. She tries to pass this virtue to her students everyday, with her famous expression being “ Castine’s don’t quit!”. Ms. Castine pursued higher education at Florida Atlantic University, earning a Bachelor’s degree in History and a minor in French. While she contemplated whether or not she should attend graduate school, she decided to pursue teaching instead. Going in with no experience under her belt, she was hired at a middle school to teach 7th grade Civics and 8th grade U.S History. “ That school decided to give me a chance, and I’m so thankful for that”, Ms. Castine commented. After that first year of teaching, she knew that this was her calling. Not only could Ms. Castine have an impact on students, but she could spend hours talking about her passion area- history. “There is no greater feeling than making a difference in a student’s life, even if it’s just one. It is more rewarding than any kind of salary to me”, 


A big interest of Ms. Castine’s is music. She has over 100 vinyls in her vinyl collection. She also collects antiques. As a history fan, antiques bring the past to life for her.


Ms. Castine decided to enter teaching because of the influence that two teachers had on her. The first teacher that had a huge impact was Mrs. Miklos.“ When I entered into high school, I was not perfect. I was not school focused and it wasn’t a priority for me. I didn’t try to get good grades, and I didn’t care to either. I had one teacher in particular who never gave up on me”, Ms. Castine said. Mrs. Miklos was a History teacher who taught Ms.Castine’s 10th grade World History class. Mrs. Miklos helped Ms. Castine turn her school career around and was there for her even after high school graduation. They still communicate to this day, and she helped Ms. Castine out when she first started teaching. Another teacher that inspired Ms.Castine was Mr. Obartuck, whom she feels she really adopted her teaching style from. Although Mr. Obartuck could be laid back, he also knew when to take charge and be stern. He tried to relate to his students the way Ms.Castine tries to relate to hers. He was her 12th grade English teacher, and introduced her to her love for writing. Ms. Castine claims that these two special individuals are the reasons she is a teacher today.


To get a further glimpse in the mind of one of Somerset’s best, Ms. Castine was asked a few questions. 


Q: Who do you consider to be your biggest inspiration and why?

Ms. Castine: My students are my biggest inspiration. They are the reason I get up every morning and come to work. They are the reason I stay so late after school. My students push me not just to be abetter educator, but a better person as well. Everything I do is for them!


Q: As a history teacher, you are obviously familiar with some influential names; if you could have dinner with one, who would it be?

Ms. Castine: This is the worst question you could ask a history teacher. Just one? I can’t pick just one, but if my life depended on it, I’d pick Franklin D. Roosevelt, who hopefully would invite Winston Churchill, too. 


Q: If you could create your own class, what would its title be and what would you teach?

Ms. Castine: I would love to teach the History of Rock and Roll. Beethoven walked, so NBA Youngboy could  run. I also would love to teach African-American History as well, it would benefit so many students  and create a better understanding of our society.  


Q: As STEM continues to be proclaimed over other subjects, what value do you feel a Social  Science/Liberal arts education brings to students? 

Ms. Castine: I will never undermine the importance of STEM, but I think it makes many overlook the  importance of studying Humanities. The old proverb, “If we don’t learn from History, it’s deemed  to repeat itself”, is 100% true. We need to understand our past in order to change for the future.  I believe studying Humanities helps us better comprehend ourselves and humanity as a whole. It creates an awareness and understanding of issues and conflicts in our world, which in return  creates more informed and overall better individuals. Everything in the past has led up to this day and age we are in now. How can we grow if we don’t learn where we come from? Other benefits of gaining an education in Social Studies include learning how to properly research with  academic sources and collect data with critical thinking skills. I could go on for days with this. I’ll stop here.  


Q:  If there is one lesson you could leave your students knowing, what would it be?

Ms. Castine: People can take away everything you own, but no one can take away your education. Knowledge is power. Use it and spread it to make the world a better place.