Can Cows Fly? The Legend of Mr. Poranski

In a world where students often dread going to class, facing repetitive lessons and uninspired concepts, Mr. Poranski stands out as an exceptional teacher who brings joy and enthusiasm to his students every day. Born and raised in Glens Falls, New York, Mr. Poranski earned a degree in Engineering from Marquette College of Engineering before embarking on a successful career in the workforce.

After years of working as an engineer, Mr. Poranski made the decision to become a high school teacher and moved to Ipswich, Massachusetts in 2003. Since then, he has become a beloved member of the faculty at Ipswich High School, inspiring countless students with his deep knowledge of Physics, Pre-Calculus, and Computer Science.

Despite the challenging nature of his classes, Mr. Poranski has a gift for making difficult concepts accessible to his students. He is patient and supportive, giving each student the time and attention they need to succeed. As one student put it, “He makes class interesting, but he also gives us a lot of time to figure out things on our own. He teaches pretty difficult subjects, so it’s impressive that he is able to teach these difficult topics to so many students.”

Mr. Poranski’s cow flying over the class. (Clickable GIF)

Additionally, Mr. Poranski’s work ethic is something to behold. If you have a class with him, you know that every day you walk into the classroom, you’ll see his smiling face. While other classes have a chance of a substitute teacher, Mr. Poranski shows his dedication by making sure he’s there every day to educate his classes. In fact, the last time he missed school, we weren’t even worried about the inevitable pandemic that swept the nation. But it’s very well possible that the pandemic to come played a role in his absence in 2019: “The last time I was absent was in November of 2019, I had at the time what I thought was the flu, just knocked me out, and I think I was absent for a day. In hindsight, I think I was absent with covid. All of the symptoms matched the covid symptoms.”

But Mr. Poranski is much more than just a great teacher. He is also one of the funniest people in the school, with a talent for making his students laugh even during the most challenging classes. His sense of humor is irreverent and unexpected, with jokes that range from the absurd to the hilarious.

For example, one day in Physics class, Mr. Poranski asked the question, “can cows fly?” The class was taken aback, but Mr. Poranski quickly produced a 20-year-old mechanical cow with wings, which he hung from the ceiling and set to fly in circles. Another time, he described a car crash using Barbie and Ken dolls, providing an interesting (and funny) example of inertia that sticks in students’ minds well beyond the unit test.  

Overall, Mr. Poranski is a shining example of what a great teacher can be. He is dedicated, knowledgeable, and passionate about his work, and he has a gift for making his students feel valued and inspired. As one student put it, “He’s the kind of teacher who makes you want to learn, even when the subject is tough.” We are lucky to have him at Ipswich High School, and we hope he continues to inspire students for years to come.