EAGAN, Minn. — Mark Stangl's pace around the classroom is impressive as he moves from student to student, answering questions while they build the day's assigned project.
The pace of his career is about to get a major slow down.
"I'm going to throw my alarm clock away," he laughs.
After 39 years of teaching, the last 30 years as a tech education teacher at Dakota Hills Middle School in Eagan, Mark is retiring.
The projects he's helped students create range from robotic arms, to solar cookers, which allowed kids to go outside and cook an entire meal using the rays of the sun.
What might catch your eye the most when you walk into his classroom is a giant ball of tape against the well. For over 30 years, students have been taking the scotch tape they use in class and sticking it the massive ball. "I always tell the kids that the tape ball is very similar to Mr. Stangl. It gains about five pounds every year," he jokes.
Mark says the technology has been one of the biggest changes in his 39 year career. Amidst all the change is a love for teaching, and a lesson for new and future teachers that he hopes sticks.
"It's a hard job, it's very demanding, you're on your feet all the time. Come to school prepared, it'll make your job easier. But, I think the most important thing is to enjoy every day. Enjoy the kids and have fun," Mark says.
The pace is about to change, but there are lots of good memories from his students to propel him forward.
"I love ya and I'm going to miss ya," he adds.
Mark says he has a cruise planned for later this year and hopes to spend more time gardening.