History Makes Mr. O’Malley and Mr. O’Malley Makes History


Arline Daniali, Staff Writer

Mr. Chris O’Malley is the chair of the history department at Glendale High School and has been teaching various history courses at GHS for years now. This year, he is teaching AP US History, AP Macroeconomics, and regular US History. It could be said that Mr. O’Malley really likes history. 

His love for history began when he was a child, where it was his favorite subject in school. He still finds it both interesting and important, as “history provides a framework for which we can understand the world that we live in.” Mr. O’Malley cannot imagine teaching anything else. 

Besides teaching and acting as department chair for history, he plays a crucial role as the advisor for the Class of 2024 and is excited to see this group grow up through the years. He enjoys being involved in school and the “experience” of his students. He also serves as the club advisor for the Debate Club, Economics Club, and the Leftist Literature Club. 

Mr. O’Malley was voted the 2020 GHS Teacher of the Year, and he is a finalist for this year’s award as well. He will also be speaking on behalf of Pat Navolanic Memorial Award Finalist, Tigran Sarkissian, during the PNMA Assembly webinar on May 21st.

After a long day of teaching history, Mr. O’Malley’s idea of fun is to read about history. He also plays the piano, but more likely his schedule is filled with being a father.  

As for remote learning, Mr. O’Malley believes this year “hasn’t been ideal.” He misses the student interaction between lessons and feels that it’s hard to make these connections through the Zoom screen. He finds it difficult to keep students engaged, since he could easily just smack students if we were on campus. (He proceeded to say, “I do not smack people, just in case admin reads this.”) 

The rest of the history department has been trying to “make the most” out of a bad situation, and Mr. O’Malley believes that the teachers have all been troopers. He compliments his department by emphasizing the care that our teachers have demonstrated to ensure the success of their students.  

On the topic of returning back to school, the history department is anticipating the return to the classroom to interact with students once again. They are hoping to make the transition as “seamless as possible.” And with the idea of seeing his students once again, Mr. O’Malley hopes that they will truly understand “what extraordinary human beings” they are. He feels students tend to be perfectionists and hopes to inspire them so that they “don’t let the perfect be the enemy of the good.”