Teaching through faith

Leon Husselmann is a passionate and dedicated teacher who will leave behind a great legacy when he retires in December this year.

24 September 2021 | People

Pull Quote: “This is a noble profession that I love doing with all my heart.”

Wetumwene Shikage/ Mariselle Stofberg

Leon Husselmann is a life science and biology teacher at M&K Gertze High School in Rehoboth who has been committed to the teaching profession for almost 25 years.

His journey has had some interesting turns.

“During my high school years, I was greatly inspired by my biology teacher to become a teacher one day. I first studied theology at the University of the Western Cape (UWC) and pursued a career in church ministry as a pastor.”

At the age of 30 he decided he wanted to take up teaching and enrolled at the University of South Africa (Unisa) for his Higher Education Diploma.

“I believe that Jesus Christ is the teacher of all times and to follow in His footsteps is an honour. I love to work with children and the youth at large and still believe that schools are mission fields where teaching, evangelism and counselling run concurrently on a daily basis.”

Power of religion

Despite his love and dedication to education, his first calling was to become a pastor. “While serving as a tent-making pastor, I started as an unqualified teacher in Mariental. I then pursued my professional studies in education through Unisa and was appointed as a full-time teacher,” Husselmann said.

He left the teaching profession in 2000 for full-time church ministry and returned to the teaching profession in 2011.

“I am about to retire in December this year after 25 years of teaching and I enjoyed every moment of this amazing journey.”

Rewarding career

For him, the most rewarding parts of teaching is being able to see the light-bulb moments when learners grasp concepts and perform outstandingly.

“I love identifying learners with leadership qualities and helping them develop these skills through learner representative councils and through hiking trips. I enjoy giving moral and psychosocial support to learners and coaching extramural activities like athletics, rugby and culture codes at school.”

Husselmann was worn many hats within the education sphere as head of department, principal and member of the curriculum panel for life sciences.

“I supervised many LRC groups of various schools and started the editorial team and a science club at M&K Gertze High School. I took learners to visit the H.E.S.S. telescope site on the Gamsberg and visited the Cheetah Foundation site near Otjiwarongo. During these activities, I could connect to students on a different level which makes teaching even more joyful.”

Husselmann tries to live healthy and keep fit. “I love cycling and because of my love for the outdoors, I participated in the Namibia Wilderness Therapy Programme where hiking with school-going youth was central.

“I also love singing and playing guitar. This inspired me to use my talent to compose the school anthem of M&K Gertze High School in 2016 titled ‘A beacon on our way’.”

He has learned that learners enjoy interactive lessons like practicals and out-door teaching.

“They definitely keep you on your toes to finish marking as quickly as possible because they want their results! Recognising those learners living in harsh conditions and lending a helping hand is an intricate part of what we do as teachers.”

Though his science club he has learned that you should never walk when you can fly and to remember the sky is the limit.

His religion is at the core of who Husselmann is. “I always try to keep following the footsteps of my master teacher, Jesus Christ, who set the example of how to inspire others through teaching, coaching, preaching and compassion. Two months after a double coronary bypass operation, I remain grateful to God for his healing power.”

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