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Artful and Holistic Teaching: Lessons for Today’s Teachers With Judy Hanna

Updated: May 6

Specialized Storage Solutions

Judy Hanna is a mother, grandmother, and educator of over 50 years. She has used music as a tool for innovative teaching in grade school and special education classes. Beyond music, Judy is passionate about history and language.

Here’s a glimpse of what you’ll learn:

  • [4:21] Judy Hanna shares a glimpse into her childhood at school

  • [7:47] How Judy became a teacher

  • [12:08] Inspiring children through music, art, and poetry 

  • [21:14] Judy’s approach to teaching English as a second language: roleplay 

  • [29:49] The challenges and rewards of being a teacher

  • [36:49] What is the role of creativity in learning?

  • [38:58] Judy shares her experience as a young mom and college student

  • [48:58] Advice for the next generation: be kind and save the bees

In this episode…

Everyone has unique learning methods, and the teachers who can unlock each student’s pathway to equal education are exceptional and valued. Today’s guest has left an incredible legacy by cultivating groundbreaking teaching strategies far ahead of her time. What’s her secret?

Retired teacher Judy Hanna has spent a lifetime identifying ways to simplify and elevate children’s learning processes. She has discovered that poetry helps children retain historical facts, and creating reenactments, dance routines, and drawings allows kids with learning disabilities to express themselves and excel alongside their peers. Judy is also bilingual, noting the role of the five senses in learning various languages. When teaching English as a second language, she ensured her lessons were entertaining and created an interactive environment to stimulate language development. Judy’s creative approaches have established a legacy that impacts her granddaughter, who has become inspired to pursue teaching in Judy’s footsteps. 

In today’s exclusive episode of The Tao of Pizza Podcast, Mark Hiddleson welcomes his mother, Judy Hanna, to the show. They discuss her influence on their family and community. Judy also shares her greatest rewards as a teacher, her experience raising Mark while attending college, and her advice for the next generation of educators.

Resources mentioned in this episode:

Sponsor for this episode:

This episode is brought to you by Specialized Storage Solutions Inc.


I have been in the logistics and storage industry for several decades. I know I don’t look that old, but it's true.

We provide industry-leading warehouse storage solutions nationwide.

So basically, if you have a warehouse that needs Rack, Shelving, Carts, Conveyors, or Mezzanines, we help engineering, installations, inspections, and repairs to help clients optimize their logistics operations.

Sometimes people don’t even realize that we can actually help with permit acquisition services.

We take a holistic look at your entire business supply chain ecosystem to develop the resources for continually improving your operation.

To learn more, visit or give us a call at (707) 732-3892. One of the best ways to learn more about our products and services is to follow us on Instagram. And there’s a link on our website to do that.

I will even give you my personal email address for podcast listeners, so email me at if you’re ready to take your warehouse storage and retrieval systems to the next level.

Episode Transcript:


Intro  0:01  

Welcome to The Tao of Pizza where we feature top logistics leaders, entrepreneurs and supply chain innovators and share their inspiring stories with a holistic twist.


Mark Hiddleson  0:16  

Mark Hiddleson here, host of The Tao of Pizza Podcast where I talk with top industry innovators in the warehousing logistics and supply chain business with the holistic twist. Today we're going to be talking with a very innovative teacher, mother, and grandmother about music, the art and science of learning, and other fun stuff. But before introducing today's guest, this episode is brought to you by Specialized Storage Solutions. I have been in the logistics and storage industry for several decades. And I No, I don't look that old, but it's true. We provide industry-leading warehouse storage solutions nationwide. So basically, if you have a warehouse that needs rack, shelving, carts, conveyors or mezzanines will help with design engineering installations, inspections and repairs to help our clients optimize their logistics operations. And God sometimes people don't even realize that we can actually help with permit acquisition services, we take a holistic look at your entire business supply chain ecosystem to develop the resources for continually improving your operation. To learn more, visit our website at Give us a call at 707-732-3892 or even give my personal email out to podcast listeners. So email me at If you're ready to take your warehouse storage and retrieval systems to the next level. But today, we're joined by Judy Hanna Cruzi. She's a mother, grandmother and an educator of more than 50 years. Music is a thread that's run through her life since age three. She crafted music as a tool for innovative teaching in grade school and special education classes all over the central valley and foothills of California. Besides music, history, and language are her significant passions. Being a teacher is a very great part of her identity. And she's the mother in number one hero of the host of the Tao of Pizza Podcasts. Mom, welcome to the show.


Judy Hanna  2:14  

Hi, Mark. It's really nice to see you.


Mark Hiddleson  2:17  

Yeah. How did you like that introduction?


Judy Hanna  2:20  

Yeah, that was pretty nice. sounded familiar.


Mark Hiddleson  2:22  

You're like, hey, that's me.


Judy Hanna  2:26  

Yeah, sounds good to me. Yeah. So job.


Mark Hiddleson  2:31  

I'm gonna tell one ourselves, we had some fun getting this Zoom meeting set up. Without a computer update. We had a a mouse, did you find the mouse? Or?


Judy Hanna  2:45  

No, I just didn't bother. I carried it with me in my computer case for eons. But I must have decided I didn't need it in my computer case. So I put it somewhere safe. Yeah, yeah, I


Mark Hiddleson  2:57  

have one right here it because my, you know, I have a just use the paddle my computer will. The more and more paperwork and stuff I'm doing on my computer, I'm getting like carpal tunnel, or you know my how to get repetitive stress industries because a little mouse pads suck. So they only got this, but I don't really know how to use this one that good. Or I never use it, it makes my fingers hurt, because they're already messed up from


Judy Hanna  3:22  

anyways. So I just use the finger pad for years. And then sometimes it's not convenient. So you'd really do have to have the mouse if you want to drag music and you know, to a file or something. But haven't done that for a while.


Mark Hiddleson  3:38  

Yeah, so we have to give a shout out to my kids to Serena, Drake and Cody the all three want to say hi, I know there'll be watching this podcast. And I didn't ask the boys. Because they would have they would have done something funny. I would ask him like, what's a question? But as Serena and she's going to school to be a teacher, so she's falling your foots up another he wrote? You're one of her heroes. So she wanted me to ask you what? You've been a teacher for 50 years, but what was it like being a student? I thought that was a great question. So share, share some of what it was like.


Judy Hanna  4:21  

You know, it's kind of funny that you should ask because when I was little, I was a very quiet child. And but I was the youngest, and my older siblings probably talked a lot. So therefore, I would sit behind a chair and play with my little paper dolls. And, you know, that was the image that my family had of me. But as soon as I went to kindergarten, and I don't know if you know this already, but I started talking. I talked to every quiet person in the class, who would never talk At naptime, the teacher who was a lovely woman put me next to every child because we used to have naptime and the rugs. And finally, she put me next to my next door neighbor who was very, very quiet. I even got that little girl to talk. So, you know, be verbal, what has not been a part a problem for me in school. And I was never as smart aleck, but I shared my sense of humor in the classroom. But I always love school. And luckily, I just luckily was growing up in a small town. And, you know, kept the same friends for years. So, but I never wanted to be a teacher. So it's really funny that you know, your daughter and then also a niece of mine. I went it was she's a teacher already. And then Serena is studying to be a teacher and she loves me who's a teacher. Mighty Stacy's daughter. Isn't Reagan, Reagan? Nice. I got a message from her recently that she's loving. You know what she's doing second grade. So, and I'm saving, I'm saving all my books, because I'm hoping that Serena is going to use them. And


Mark Hiddleson  6:18  

I see you have some in the background. I'm looking, it's hard for me because I recognize we've had those encyclopedias since I was 10 years old. And I think they were old, that I remember looking at 19,


Judy Hanna  6:32  

they're 1986, I think. And


Mark Hiddleson  6:35  

gasca. goes, we had those when, in the early 80s. I'll bet you they're 1966


Judy Hanna  6:44  

round now. I think I look at them. And maybe I mean, they're not any older than 70s. But the only reason I have them is when this computer world crashes. I'm coming to your house, this knowledge, right. And I have some journals too. And they take up a lot of room but you know, what are you going to do?


Mark Hiddleson  7:05  

I love those books. I still love the for the for medical journals that came with it. They were they kind of look like encyclopedias and


Judy Hanna  7:11  

kept all of them. But I have I think I have a medical journal that was my grandmother's I'm not sure that I have all the medical journals that came with that. But they do they are you know, they were weighty and they take up a lot of space. But I'm, you know, I'm keeping them just in case, you know, you or your children will need them in some horrible future.


Mark Hiddleson  7:33  

I see you have the book gifts of the seat on there too. So we'll have to do could maybe share that story. At the end. If we ask. Ask you you didn't go into teaching when you went to school. You went to school for something else.


Judy Hanna  7:47  

Yes, I wanted to be a diplomat. And I was going to San Francisco State I studied politics and, and diplomacy. And there were two schools of thought. When I was going to school, you know, there was the UN model. And then there was a more what would I call it? Progressive model. And so, you know, I probably, you know, found a little bit about both, and definitely the UN is not perfect. And that's why some students, you know, we're not we're not fans of the UN. And so, I, I went I loved San Francisco State, but I transferred to Sac State, they did not have international relations. So I had to, you know, completely changed my outlook. So I was going to be a probation officer. And Serena might be interested in this, because there was no way I could ever be a patient officer. I just I would have said oh, you poor


Mark Hiddleson  8:51  

people go for it. You're brand new, you were pretty handy with the wooden spoon.


Speaker 1  9:02  

That spoon was very thin Mark. It wasn't like those those rounded spoons. It was a flat little wooden thing. Anyway, the only reason I ended up being a teacher is because I fell into substituting after I never could have been a probation officer because in my day I scored very high on the interviews, you know, in the writing in the but there was only one probation, a woman probation officer and I never would have gotten a job unless she reached. So I just fell into substituting Oh, and I found that was my passion. So I started out wanting to do high school but you were an elementary school and it just fit better for me to do Elementary and that was where I just I just loved and I have not ever been able to get away only for two years that I've been able to step away A from being in a classroom. But I love learning. And I love teaching, you know, that's why I want to teach you how to play the piano or maybe the ukulele.


Mark Hiddleson  10:13  

So you've I said you've used you've always thought that music is a super important well, in our family, I mean music is runs through her family. And when we sing songs, I was laughing about that word the other day that we It didn't matter. Fourth of July, any holiday party, if you've got if my grandparents and you and your sister and all the kids and somebody could play the piano. And I even I started could play. I was thinking I can play the trumpet. Pretty well. I still can pick it up. But it's not a trumpet. It's not very sexy. No one wants to hear you. Bang on the treble.


Judy Hanna  10:56  

Well, yeah, if you had other people to play with it, you know, it would be great. Yeah. Yeah. So


Mark Hiddleson  11:04  

I did practice beyond me. And that's another thing that hurt my finger. Like, I'm a wimp. I didn't realize when you practice the piano, you're doing conditioning, I mean, your


Judy Hanna  11:12  

wrist fingers. And elordi guitar, you asked me about the guitar. And I'm devote so much time to play the ukulele now, that when I pick up the guitar, it's a big stretch of for the fingers, and I can do it. But I need to tip you know, 10 minutes a day or something on the guitar. Yeah,


Mark Hiddleson  11:34  

I just like it's good for imagination. I really enjoyed listening to music. And that's what one of my best friends Chris Murphy, you've met him. He's a musician. And I love going somewhere with Chris because I'll sing along. Because it's just like our family, Chris will pick up the guitar, he'll start playing. And I'll sing anything. We're laughing our family because we think we know the words and most of these. thing, we have no idea we see the words later. And it's like, oh, that's that's what that says, Well, what did you What are some of the ways you've used music to better kids are


Judy Hanna  12:08  

well, you know, music, art, poetry, you know, we can fall into a very boring way of teaching. And kids just need a lot of you know, they need a little pizzazz in their, in their school. And if a kid is having trouble reading, but they are singing a song, and then you have him reading the words to the song, or maybe they're just learning the worst the song and then they're looking at the worse a song, or poetry, I love using poetry to teach history. And, you know, they're the, the, I should have researched for this interview more, but into the valley of death row, the 500, you know, there were guns to the left of them guns to the right of them. And kids really get into that. And each one of them has a paper that they they read off, you know, so the whole class would and then sometimes the kids would have different parts. So like, at Christmas time, we always did the night before Christmas, and we had sound effects. And each group had to learn their their part. And also when I taught third grade, I, I did the oh my gosh, the the new the the ballet, the Christmas Nutcracker. And I would divide my kids into groups. And not every teacher would want to do this because it takes a little kids a long time in a group to figure out what they're going to do. So you kind of have to rotate between the groups. You have leaders who are Yeah, right. They'll go with it, you know. And so and dancing, I mean movement is, is really important to the brain also. And then movement to music is just really great. And I and we had the greatest time. And one student that I had effective him his whole life. He did the Russian dance with his group that year. And he's a son of your fourth grade teacher who's a lovely woman. And he immediately started a collection of nutcrackers. And I visited their house one year, and there's a whole China Well, he's, you know, he's not in the house anymore. He's grown up but he had a whole china closet full of nut crackers. And I guess he's turned out into to be a very interesting creative kind of guy as an adult and an entertaining his mom says he's got a very good sense of humor. But you know, I'd have not been able to do that for 900 kids, but I hope there was a light little light bulb. Yeah. That might have shined on on some of them but A kids who are having trouble. Let's say in fifth grade, I taught fifth grade for a while, for several years. And they were supposed to be studying the history, epics, you know, from like, where are the beginning of time. And I would have them make little murals of all the different epics in history. And, you know, a little girl who was in a pullout program who had a learning disability, she did a great job on that, you know, so I could give her a on that. So she did all these beautiful, you know, drawings about, you know, early man and whatever, you know, sections of history came after that. So, and I wasn't an easy teacher, I mean, I, I made the fifth graders do state reports, long after some teachers gave up and they had the kids do a B, C, D reports about a state, you know, I still had him, you know, do little cards with different and then they got to draw maps, which is like art, you know, yeah, he was trying to pull in, and then plays Oh, God, you know, we did several plays, and I wrote several plays for the kids.


Mark Hiddleson  16:16  

And it's a I was thinking about the poems. I love poetry, too. I mean, we both have a love for language. In the end, I was thinking about the song. And I was thinking about warehousing in the city. We're gonna have a song Berkey was like, get the plans, get the plans, get the truck. That's a great idea. And then raw, you know, you move well moving, man. We'll just have to get our words of the six things we want to do. You know, tell the client call the phone, pick up the lift. I can have you write a song for our team on for exit.


Judy Hanna  16:53  

You know what, it's too bad. My whole family is not still alive. Because when we used to sit around the dining room table, we would start jingles. Or like any subject, no matter what we were discussing somebody with start singing singing a song. And, you know, we did rhymes we did. And I thought, gosh, if we could sit around this table and do some advertising, you know, we would have been multibillion


Mark Hiddleson  17:20  

that we've seen the Mad Men. Well, that's why I started the podcast. Mom, that was my secret weapon is I'm gonna have you write jingles? You're gonna be like Charlie Sheen on half men? Yeah. Well, I'll be Charlie Sheen. But you can help me write the jingles. You can be my muse.


Judy Hanna  17:40  

I don't want to be the brother either. And I don't want to be the housekeeper. Although she was very funny.


Mark Hiddleson  17:45  

bertos funny. Yeah.


Judy Hanna  17:48  

Yeah. Passed away.


Mark Hiddleson  17:50  

Oh, she did? I


Judy Hanna  17:51  

didn't know. Not too long ago. Yeah, I think in this in 2023. I think. Yeah,


Mark Hiddleson  17:56  

I really liked that guy that to Charlie, she's pleased with that show was never the same. You


Judy Hanna  18:01  

can't I mean, it can't be it's, you know, it's like I say the movies never as good as the book. You know? And he may have been Yeah, I have didn't see that many of them. But people just want. I mean, when, when I'm watching a series, you know how we're aware. I don't know if you guys do but but I'll just watch one whole season of, you know, a series and or three seasons or whatever. And then my friends are gone. This theory that all this. All the seasons are over. And you got to say adios to your friends. Unless you want to watch it all over again. Yeah, so that's kind of the Ashton Kutcher. Good years. Problem is that he wasn't Charlie Sheen.


Mark Hiddleson  18:44  

And it wasn't, there was no way. Yeah. To recover. So, um, what else? What else do you want to talk about? We started to talk about the TV show. So what are you what are you watching right now?


Judy Hanna  18:59  

Well, I like murder mysteries. I love the British, because they do really good movies and television. And, and they're not putting on any airs. I mean, if they need their teeth straightened when they are kids, they usually still need they're, you know, they're just real, real, real people. I don't like the kind of shows where they do the Y incision. And, you know, I don't, I don't like really bloody murdery natural, you know, kind of stuff but, but really twisty kind of mysteries are really interesting, you know, to me, because in reading I've always read biographical stuff, but it's nice to have something that's just light, you know? And mysterious. Interesting. Yeah.


Mark Hiddleson  19:49  

So, going back to your career, yes, the long one. What's, what's one of your proudest moments, something you look back on. You're especially proud of like a big success.


Judy Hanna  19:59  

Oh, gosh, you know, I don't I don't know, I just I've been in it for so many years. I don't even know. If I have a proudest moment. I'm I know, I'm proud of everything that I've done. And I am proud of teaching people English who can't speak English and people who say, unless you didn't speak Spanish and teaching a language in a way that they don't do it in school, you know,


Mark Hiddleson  20:34  

I can give that say something about that because you're 100% bilingual. You and Serena is the only one of our kids who really like she's really done well in Spanish. And she even our kids have heard you or the my dad when he was alive at a restaurant. And they're like, your parents speak Spanish better than other people that are from Mexico? Like, yeah, great. Spanish. So that's a good one. Because you have taught a lot of people English. I mean, I think me Wow, thank you for the difference that makes in this country, even knowing how to speak English well versus not. That's a accomplishment. So what did you do that? What's your unique approach?


Judy Hanna  21:14  

Oh, well, it's a multi. It's a is seeing, hearing, feeling, you know, when I taught, and that's why I couldn't keep it up, because I did it for two years. And then I did it for another year later, because I worked full time. And I had all these props. I had ironing board and iron, I had an apron, I had Mickey Mouse, it was a main character that did things for you know, and, and I made jokes, you know, in Spanish, I suppose to speak Spanish, I mean, but I would make Spanish you know, a size in Spanish and make everybody laugh. And these are people who worked all day. And then they had the stamina to come sit in a classroom at night. So you got to entertain him, I had to run around,


Mark Hiddleson  22:07  

getting on third going for the entertainment.


Judy Hanna  22:12  

So entertaining is is is exhausting. And, and also, I guess I had a proud period of my teaching where I was a mentor to other teachers, and I did and services. And there's nothing worse than and teaching your own your own friends in it in service, because it doesn't matter if they like you respect you, they do not want to be at an in service. And so I tried really hard to be entertaining to them too. But you know, you put teachers at, you know, in this pressure situation, anything on the news, that's not working, we got to do this in the school up, the schools are going to have to start teaching this right. And so that's what happened with the English learners. You know, an English learner, if I could teach all English learners or all or all Spanish learners or in my it, it was the way I do it. And I didn't invent it. You know, I studied these, these writers, these educators who have written books about it, it's you don't, you know, you don't open a book and say, hola, hola, Jose, you know, como star, you have an interactive classroom with a lot of objects. And you tell people sit down, stand up, sit down, stand up. Roleplay


Mark Hiddleson  23:39  

it's what I call roleplay. And people laugh. Yeah, one of the most effective ways of learning and so I was saying our team, we're gonna have a thing where there's six people on our team, and we're gonna, everyone got nervous, like said, somebody's going to play me then I'll play Cody, then somebody else can play Spencer's, I want to play me and then get into the shoot. It's a different experience when you're like, Okay, well, you know what this person would say, you know, the mannerisms, you know, but there's actually more learning and I do rope I call people all the time if I need to make a difficult phone call or something phone call, I don't want to make I'll call somebody else. It's like, you can't read it in a book. But act it out. Right? Same thing token. That's what I remember. You were telling me? Oh, that's, that's Spanish. I know.


Judy Hanna  24:34  

What's on things on the wall, or on a board? And you're talking a different language while you're drawing? And the people have to see what you're drawing? Are you drawing a house or a tree or somebody's face? You know, like, no, no, no, no, no, I'm gonna draw a eye and I'm gonna draw another eye and I'm gonna make curly hair and, and you're, you know, you're doing it in a foreign language and they're saying, oh, okay, A and you do that enough, I did that I taught Spanish in summer school one year. And, and also a piano, which was fun. And I would like within a couple of weeks, the kids were able to do a play, you know. So, I mean, that was called the rush program, but I had them, you know, acting out repeating, and you always model, you keep modeling, and then you'll stop modeling and see if they're catching on Right, yeah. But then, because when a baby learns, they are listening first, and then they're speaking, and then a down the road, then they're reading, and then they're writing. And that's how you would teach any language. And thanks to whoever, who are taught me


Mark Hiddleson  25:56  

cares, it's like you can just claim. So how long ago was it? And so to me, that's like a holistic approach to learning. Because you're involving your whole body, you're not just thinking you're trying to pack things into your head, and think about but it's actually you're hearing and you're using your hands, and then hearing it and seeing it at the same time being played out. Because that's like, so that's the natural way you would learn a language you would just witness other people. And


Judy Hanna  26:23  

one more factor is the stress level. You are stressed your brain began to, you know, brain. When am I talking about the brainstem? Your brainstem mode? Yeah, and that goes with math too. And so, you know, I, when I was teaching math, especially, you know, when I got older, then no longer you teach, just like everything else, the better you get at it, right, the more you will, if you are good. If you're not, you just keep, you know, having the kids do color in math. But I had the kids each have a chalkboard, I mean, it's it's so basic, that Serena, you can listen to this. Every kid has a chalkboard, we're doing math. And we're going to do some problems together. So you introduce the lesson, you do some problems together. So then I give them a problem. And, and they all have their board and they can look at somebody else's. Because that's how you learn. Yeah. So everybody has their chalkboard, and then you're going Oh, my goodness. So there, you're reducing the stress because they can look at somebody else's. And then you go boards. Everybody holds their board. So I wanted to tell the superintendent one year, all I need is chalkboard, you want to cut the budget, all I need. But you know, and the kid has to learn eventually, right? But if they have several practices, where they're relaxed, and they've can look at somebody else's, then sooner or later, it's just like the language that they get it. But you know, you can't do that for every problem. You know, they, some of them don't get help with homework, you know, it's just, you know, it is it is a real challenge, you know, teaching and now young people harder than ever to teach.


Mark Hiddleson  28:27  

I've heard teachers a rumor I remember you saying this, I was a kid and I never thought it was true. You'd said the parents are the toughest to deal with, like parents always think their kid is 100% in the right 100% of the time, and I thought you were full of it. But it happened to me with my kids. Anytime my kids, if they came home, if there was a letter, there was something I was like, oh, obviously this teacher has something screwed up because my kid I don't mean everything. And it is it's I have a think people are good people. It's just a natural and even I knew it. And I had the self awareness to go like, Oh, this is what my mom was talking about. And like joke with my kids. I'm Oh, and 33 against any school administrator everything because whenever I go in there defend my kid, there's always something they left out of the story. And then I get there and it's like a gamer the venue and this is Oh my god. Ah, um, what are some of the other things? What are some of the other challenges or things you got better? I loved what you talked about getting better. I haven't seen and there's some people who do one year over and over and over for 30 years. Yeah, yeah.


Judy Hanna  29:49  

When I go home when the contract time is over, right. Those of us who are still there at five o'clock at night and we don't have all our work done, you know,


Mark Hiddleson  29:56  

and it's every business, not just teaching there's There's the people who didn't show up. And they're doing the same thing. But I love learning. I love being a better than I was. What are some of the other things? So what do you think of what the parents so the parents are? Well, you know,


Judy Hanna  30:17  

and it's funny because I changed schools, you know, I volunteered to change schools, and I stepped from a school where I was beloved, you know, I had been there for 14 years teaching, first grade, and then first grade, third grade, fifth grade, and back to third grade. So mostly third grade. You know, the kids love me, the parents love me, everything was really cool. Just across town. I'm a new teacher. And I'm running kind of off subject here. So you're gonna have to get me Ring, ring me back. But I was the evil teacher. Because these students that I had, I had a fifth sixth, a combination. And every teacher who didn't want certain sixth graders sent them over to my school. The fifth graders were spoiled and had the same teacher for two years in a row. And they thought she was just so wonderful. And so I had a lot of trouble. And you know, I'm doing a different grade. And I'm doing a split grade, and I've got behavior issues. And then I have parents who are questioning me constantly, you know, and it took a couple of years for me to be the beloved teacher again, you know, because I was like, or they didn't know me. And, but when I was teaching, fourth, fifth combination, one of my last year as a parent that I remember, I did not a bad parent. I have a couple of funny stories about parents. But one parent in particular came in and they were not violent people. But they were ticked off because their kid was not getting very good grades. And he was a wonderful child, but he had a reading disability. And the teacher the the year before, had not been honest about his performance. And I am not a really tough grader. I really am not, you know, I tried made it's pretty easy. And so if I was having issues with this kids grades, you know, it was honest, right? And then so I get these parents, he's never done that he's never had a C before. And he's always gotten really good grades. So I went back and I talked to the previous teacher who told me Oh, yeah, he had a lot of trouble with this and that but I think she really didn't grade him and then most of them you know, he was not remotely close to how he was doing so he would have been really rudely awakened when he got in upper grades you know, but you know a really great kid but you know, you do everything you can to help kids but you know, reading issues are just really difficult because you can clown around your whole childhood and if you decide you want to be a lawyer when you grow up you can read all about it right? Yeah,


Mark Hiddleson  33:06  

I mean reading is one of those things that it's just it's the entry level ticket into yes so many different like if you want to learn me know, you can learn early so we have the podcast for people who don't read good old podcast is a way of learning Well, I thought they were goofy five or six years ago, but it's a great way to learn kind of the same things you're talking about. It's it's different than reading the book. Most of them have a video so you can see but even the ones you can hear you know it's an audio like an audio I love the idea of audiobooks but I like reading I'm gonna read it like I love there's something about reading for a couple years I didn't realize because it was hard it was taking me forever and I couldn't figure it out. But my eyes I couldn't see why I would get stuck on a paragraph in the back of doom back then. Like I used to be able to read a chapter in like 20 minutes now it's take me 20 minutes to read one page. But now I have reading glasses


Judy Hanna  34:03  

Yeah, well difference and I have a lot of eye trouble and I just read so much that it makes my eye travel worse you know I'm a candidate for for the surgery for my eyes you know cataract and you have to wait forever to get the surgery and I my glasses aren't right for me. And I've started stopped wearing glasses all the time because it's just as easy for me to read with that no glasses as it is with glasses. But anyway I have a funny story about another student that who was really cute the same year this little girl a fourth grader fourth fifth is a great combination because the fourth kids are really angelic and the fifth kids are still you know they're not you know they're not starting to act like junior high school yet you know the six start hot dog game and but this one little girl you Her parents were very religious, and a very supportive parents. You know, I had no complaints about the parents and Mother, you know, came into the classroom and but the little girl went home. And this is something little kids do show the kids of film. It was not about evolution, it was about, I don't know, maybe the sea or something, oh, she got this idea that I told them that monkeys came out of the sea.


Mark Hiddleson  35:29  

Your waterfalls.


Judy Hanna  35:33  

Anyway, it was a father, who called the school and want to talk to the principal. And she was kind of chuckling because she goes, I don't think that Miss Hanna would say that. But you know, and the father, I had no contact with a father and he was a you know, he was a concerned father. And, and so I just, I was laughing. I said, No, I can't remember exactly the subject matter. But no, there were no monkeys coming out of the sea. You know, there was no, you know, there was no


Mark Hiddleson  36:06  

way to write a song about a monkey.


Judy Hanna  36:08  

A monkey came from the sea. Good. Seahorse would be as close as you'd have to a monkey. See? Okay, you know that? Oh, well, but that, you know, a lot of things happen. But that, you know, parents can be an issue, and they're probably more of an issue. That last June, is that yeah, last elementary school that I taught that the parents were very pushy. You know, and they, they wanted to kind of control. Yeah. And, you know, parents have a right to, to give input. But, you know, you can't you can't rule the whole roost. You know,


Mark Hiddleson  36:49  

that's a hot topic right now about parents in school and everything learned, I don't say right on top of the news, but I know that it's a it's on the national agenda of where, what the role of parents is, I think it's, it's obviously it's nuanced, right? It's, I'm really glad, I'm really happy that Serena is going into education, because she's, like you in she's one of it's a passion for her. And we need teachers like that. And teachers that are going to be creative, use different things to get to different kids use music, educate the whole personality to see like, the whole person paradigm. Yeah, body. music, poetry,


Judy Hanna  37:33  

as the art is another, you know, I'm not an artist, but I'm a great artist for kids, because they think I'm really good. Even. Yeah, wow. You know, like, the idea that I'm, you know, because I would teach them how to how to draw a body with a knack, you know, in not, as you know, not, and animals and, you know, and C's, but I'm not an artist, you know. And so art is another way to reach kids, or to find something that the kid can really connect to, if they can really connect to this thing. Maybe they stay in school, you know, and maybe they have a career that involves there's all kinds of careers and involve art drawing, whatever, you know,


Mark Hiddleson  38:17  

especially now, I mean, creativity is one of the most important skills you can have. Because he it's important to be flexible, things are changing so fast. I mean, things have changed. Think about what was it like being in college, or in your mid 20s? And having a baby to take care of?


Judy Hanna  38:44  

I don't know if you want to hear about Mark, but, you know,


Mark Hiddleson  38:49  

like for you. I mean, I haven't thought about it. I hadn't thought about that would be amazing experience to be 2322 23


Judy Hanna  38:58  

Yeah, it was, yeah, I got my degree when I was 23. And I was fortunate, and I've said this many times that I had already finished part of my junior year. So all I had to do was finishing up my junior year. And, and then my senior year. And I don't want to spend a horribly long time on this. But I was going to San Francisco State and it was during the Vietnam War and there was a lot of protests and the campus was closed down. Well not closed down. But a lot of the services there were no more services at the on the campus, the cafeteria workers were on strike, because, you know, the students were on strike and yada yada yada.


Mark Hiddleson  39:41  

So it was a major major, I didn't know that that's again.


Judy Hanna  39:47  

So I you know, when I was expecting you, I was still going to school, but a lot of the school a lot of the classes were a lot more open as far as how you get your grade, you know? And I didn't feel like attending so much because I didn't feel good, right. But one class, you just practically made your own grade, you know? And that's


Mark Hiddleson  40:14  

when you tell all your friends that you have to share that information. What are the classes when you make your own grade? Yeah,


Judy Hanna  40:22  

I think I, I may be wrong, but I think I was able to make my own grade. And but I wouldn't get I didn't give myself an A. I mean, what? Yeah, anyway, so after I had you, I didn't go back to school for a while, but I did go pretty pretty quickly. And I think I probably started going on Tuesdays and Thursdays. But anyway, my niece was, or my cousin was babysitting you. And you would have never been left alone, except for one night with your grandparents. And they had to bring you home in the middle of the night. Because you were crying. And at the time, they were living in apartment and they were so conscientious, right? They didn't want the neighbors to complain. So, but you cried every single time I left to go to school. Oh, bald until you threw up sometimes. And you know, you're you're my cousin. Christy was a lovely kid. But, you know, I was really hard to walk out the door. But once I walked out the door, it was like, Okay, right. Yeah. And so, but you know, it's a lot easier when you're older. I mean, I wasn't very much older. But I think I don't remember as being difficult. You know, I went to school, I did the work that I had to do. And I had somebody with you. When, when you were when I was in school, but you were just a Todd. I mean, just a toddler. Right? Yeah. But no cry cry Mark just screamed at. And, and that's this learning advice for anybody who wants to have children? Don't. Don't keep them at home with no other person in charge of them. Because it's just not going to work. You need to have a little babysitter here and there until they're used to other people, because it was just like a shock for you to have somebody. Yes, Mommy. Yeah, I


Mark Hiddleson  42:25  

remember my first years of going to daycare and whenever there was one when we lived in Sacramento downtown that was called the busy bee or so. Right. Right. We go in that. But I remember and I remember it sucking even in Mantega, which would have been like pre kindergarten even, like, Why does my mom have to leave?


Judy Hanna  42:48  

I know it's not the best. And it's it isn't. You know, but you do start socializing with other kids. But I remember that the time that a little kid was bugging you. And you said my father is a policeman and he's gonna come and arrest you. So you got in trouble, right? Yeah. And you were being picked on and I don't know if I can't remember now whether they got after the kid that who was picking on you. But you are taught not to fight. And as a teacher, you know, whoever fights gets in trouble. It doesn't matter who starts it right. And you and your best friend. Luckily, you had your best friend with you and your kindergarten class.


Mark Hiddleson  43:31  

Was it Michael Kors? Yeah, yeah,


Judy Hanna  43:34  

you got you were being teased or picked on and you were the biggest kid by ahead of anything. But your parents told you not to bite. And so we told you, okay. You tell this kid, you know who's throwing sand at you? I think or whatever. I'm gonna give you a break this.


Mark Hiddleson  43:56  

The learning scares negotiating School of Verona if


Judy Hanna  44:00  

you do it one more time. I didn't know what I said that you are going to you know, give them a punch or something.


Mark Hiddleson  44:07  

Yeah, I remember. Told me to just kick his ass. I mean, yeah. So I do remember that. Michael Cardoza and I we still, he sent me a text this morning where there's a bicycle race that Chris Johnson and Michael we do it every year. And Casey says not a race, but I did win. gave him the mic and I've stayed in touch. It's cool. I mean, that's a long friendship. Kindergarten was 50 years ago. Yeah. So he was in the early reading group and I was in the late reading group and I used to let him ride my bicycle because he got out of school or hour earlier than I did. Take my bicycle out and cruising around because he didn't have a bicycle.


Judy Hanna  44:56  

He lived right by the school.


Mark Hiddleson  44:57  

Yeah, he lived like a block home for school so he could ride Elon, he could he could write it back to school. So Apple microdose in the we've took on the bully. We're still taking on book. Mike's a real audit. It doesn't take shit from anybody. Well, yeah, that's good. We're still friends. Yeah,


Judy Hanna  45:20  

that is really nice. You know, my best friend. We met in first grade, and she's been my best friend for 870 years. Wow. Which is really crazy that we still try to get together.


Mark Hiddleson  45:37  

Yeah, those friendships, relationships, and we get back together. It is almost like it was yesterday. time together.


Judy Hanna  45:46  

So time passed.


Mark Hiddleson  45:47  

So we're running to the very end. Mom, I want to ask you I have a I have a great question. I asked a lot of my guests. What's your favorite podcast? This one, but yeah.


Judy Hanna  46:06  

I hardly watch any podcast. Yeah, I I like the podcast with the I don't know if you call her the holistic lady. The the physical. You know? Oh,


Mark Hiddleson  46:24  

yeah. The Gong. Yeah, yeah. So Vicki is Yeah, martial arts Hall of Fame. Chi Gong master, and she's a energy coach and public speaking coach. So that, so your son, I see, we're saying, your favorite podcasts are all episodes of this podcast. You're the biggest fan. That's awesome. You know,


Judy Hanna  46:47  

I can't I don't have time, you know, I do my ukulele. I think I'm studying Spanish. Because, you know, yes, I had eight years of Spanish, but you know, when that was, I use Spanish in my job, but I don't use Spanish anymore. So I've reviewed it. And I'm actually learning something. Because I've gotten high enough where there I'm learning things that that I wasn't ever taught. So and I'm doing Dutch. So don't you know, unless you really find it the puzzle that you like to solve? You know, it's not it's not like Spanish you know, Spanish has got rules that you can follow. And that's what's great about it. But I forgot what you asked me though,


Mark Hiddleson  47:33  

of every podcast


Judy Hanna  47:36  

I there's a lot of news podcasts that would be really interesting. In a groups of people are doing you know, podcasts about legal or whatever, right. But I don't seem to and I read though, say I read I do physical therapy. I do my language. And and then I do a bit of cleaning that I should you know, these things I should be doing at home laundry and


Mark Hiddleson  48:04  

it's Yeah, yeah, I'm Yeah, it's not the time so I'm using it you know, mostly for educational tools. So if I'm in the car, I'll put some if I'm flying in an airplane I try to look at people that I'm interested in it could be an author could be the politician sometimes I like to see because it'll go on podcasts will say things a little more candidly than you will on the five o'clock news. People's inside story or even just I liked the stories I kind of the background story to find out so well, this has been so one more thing was so what's this is going to be the last kind of question. What's your advice to the next generation? So this is, you know, coding there. The third, the fourth is, you know, Eric, because kids are technically would be fourth gen generation, right? I mean, so I look at


Judy Hanna  48:58  

this. Well, you know, my best advice for just anybody that's young as I mean, you see a lot of bumper sticker saying Be kind. Oh, I love the care about people care about other people care about your family. And you help people when you can. If you're able, you should help people.


Mark Hiddleson  49:24  

That is dynamite mom. Well, you are definitely and save


Judy Hanna  49:28  

the baby and save the bees and


Mark Hiddleson  49:30  

save the bees. That is a great way to end the bee kind. The kinds B II we love playing with words right? So be kind and be kind to the bees. I want to be the first to thank you. You are my hero. You're my inspiration. And this was a lot of fun. I think we only scratched the surface but Do you


Judy Hanna  50:00  

want me to show you that picture? Oh, yes.


Mark Hiddleson  50:04  

lifted up a little bit. Does Don Johnson? Yeah, right. Right. And Jacqueline Smith. Yeah, he looked really young in that picture. Like we both looked young. Yeah. Well, I


Judy Hanna  50:22  

was pretty young and poor little Mackenzie was going through bad hair. When we were on that cruise that you know, she's a beautiful woman. Yeah. Sure of her. But, I mean, I have pictures of her but I don't have it. Yeah,


Mark Hiddleson  50:35  

shout out to my sister. I think I'm gonna Mackenzie is going to be due to be on the podcast. He's in the broadcasting and she actually sells airtime and media. Yes.


Judy Hanna  50:43  

It's not just air. I mean, she people that work in radio. I mean, it's so complicated. You just wouldn't even understand it. They do. Shows and promotional concerts and all this kind of stuff.


Mark Hiddleson  50:58  

Yeah. Yeah. It sounds like it's a cool job. Yeah. All right, Mom, I love you. And thank you for coming on The Tao of Pizza podcast.


Judy Hanna  51:06  

Okay. All right. Well have a really good day, Mark. It's nice to see you. 


Mark Hiddleson  51:11  

Yeah, we got to do this more often. Yeah,


Judy Hanna 51:13  

I know. We don't even have to do it for a podcast right?


Outro  51:17  

Thanks for listening to The Tao of Pizza Podcast. We'll see you again next time and be sure to click Subscribe to get future episodes.


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