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  • "Mr. Cavender is the most amazing teacher I have ever had. His ability to connect with students is like none other I have ever seen. He truly cares about his students." --Tommy Barrington (Geometry/Trig./Calculus Student, Football Player, & Fellowship of Christian Athletes Club President)

  • "Gary empowers the kids and makes them want to do the best they can do. He does this by his openness and loving ways." -- Gail Crider (Parent of Student, Social Worker)

  • "Mr. Cavender is a very good teacher that has great patience and understanding. He connects with everyone around him. He makes jokes that will keep you on task and interested. Overall he is a very great teacher and, you will always learn a lot from him. He is the best math teacher I’ve ever had." -- Jin-Ping Jiang (Algebra I/Honors Trigonometry Student)

  • "I have observed Gary’s work with children. He always sees the positive in children even when others do not. He is able to pull out their strengths and build on them. ‘Problem’ children are challenges, not problems, for Gary and Kim. They are very dedicated to the education process for children, whether in the classroom or outdoors. They try to engage children in sports as a means of gaining self-esteem and finding a positive peer group. They also have at least 100 pairs of tennis shoes hanging from the perimeter of their deck (ask them). Their home environment is positive and they have set up a very clear set of rules and boundaries. Gary is a very strong role model and children seem eager to follow his program. Their house is in a beautiful valley in a beautiful county. I would like my own son to go to camp there." -- Menissa Judd (Parent, Social Worker)

  • "Effluent. That would be the word I would use to describe Mr. Cavender." -- Tom Ales (Algebra II Student and the starter of our web site!)

  • "I am an exchange student from Slovenia and English is not my native tongue. Mr. Cavender, my calculus teacher, presented math to me in a language I was able to understand. Before I had Mr. Cavender, I was always intimidated by my math teachers, which made me afraid of math itself. My average grade in high school math was “C”, except my junior year I got a “B”. Now I have an “A”, because finally I have a teacher that knows how to explain it to me. I appreciate math more than I ever have and I believe that I can do it. Whenever I don’t understand something, Mr. Cavender is always ready to assist me and explain the problem. He encourages us to ask questions, which makes our class really dynamic. Mr. Cavender is a very warm and helpful person, and definitely my favorite math teacher ever!" -- Sincerely, Manca Stare (Calculus Student)

  • "Mr. Gary Cavender is currently my instructor for AP Calculus, and he has truly amazed me by his dedication to and compassion for his students and by the passion he brings to class every day. Calculus is the first main-stream math class I have ever taken, being home schooled through eighth grade and then taking math through Independent Study. It has been a huge challenge for me, and if not for Mr. Cavender, I probably would have dropped the class. I am a very serious athlete, and had to miss a lot of classes for competitions; Mr. Cavender stayed with me after class and gave up many lunch breaks to help me get caught up. I struggled with many of the concepts, but with his help I ended up earning an “A” for my semester grade and feeling very proud of myself. Mr. Cavender is a long-time athlete and coach, and he has guided me athletically as well as academically, as I raced my last Cross Country season and won the National Championships in Orlando, Florida. Because I so often stay after school to do my homework, I have been able to watch Mr. Cavender work with a myriad of students, and have been greatly impressed by his ability to connect with each one at his or her unique ability level. He truly cares about all his students and takes the time to learn about their personal lives and to assist them in any way possible. He is an incredibly giving person and he models courage, optimism, and commitment. In addition to teaching, he has three children of his own and numerous foster children, to which he devotes himself. Mr. Cavender’s dedication to his work is remarkable and he is as adept at working with large groups as he is connecting on the individual level. He makes class engaging by being genuinely excited about the material and by adding surprising vignettes of humor. He presents stimulating problems and ideas, and yet explains things in easy terms and makes sure everyone in the class follows what he does. He has challenged me to think at a higher and often difficult level, but has been unfailingly patient and encouraging. I recommend him to you with all my heart." --- Amber Trotter (Calculus Student, H.S. National Cross Country Champion and U.S. National Record Holder)

  • "I would like to share a few of my thoughts about Mr. Gary Cavender. I have known Gary for the past six years while working together at Ukiah High School. I have had the opportunity to observe him teaching in the classroom, on the football field, in the school's weight room, and out at his house along the Russian River. He is clearly knowledgeable in the field of mathematics, teaching such advanced classes as Honors Trigonometry and Advanced Placement Calculus. The quality that makes Gary such an outstanding teacher however, is not what he knows, but his tremendous ability to engage young minds. I'm not sure that I know of another teacher who succeeds so well in helping students set expectations for themselves. He motivates kids to set high goals and then works with them to accomplish those goals. The students love him and what he helps them do. If I was going to go off and start my own high school and I could kidnap a few teachers from Ukiah High School, Gary would be on my list. I recommend him without reservation." -- James Hatfield (Vice Principal, Ukiah High School)
  • "I have worked with Gary for the past 15 years and learned much from him. He is an outstanding teacher, motivator, and coach. I want my daughter to have him as a teacher!" --Marshall Falgout (Math Teacher, Ukiah High School)
  • Gary Cavender has two great characteristics of all great leaders, character and competence.  I have known Mr. Cavender for over 15 years and was honored to have him coach me to become a California State Wrestling Champion and high school All-American which earned me an athletic scholarship to the University of Minnesota.   These accomplishments would not have been possible without him in my corner.  He has a tremendous work ethic, an energizing ability to connect and motivate and a gift of incredible genius.  There are three key questions regarding Mr. Cavender’s character that I can give a resilient “YES.”  Can I trust him?  YES!  Is he committed to excellence?  YES!  Does he care about me?  YES!   When you attend one his camps you can be reassured you will answer those questions about Mr. Cavender as I have since I was 14 years old.  (Brett Colombini)

  • Letter From A Mom:  (11/14/03)
    Dear Gary & gang!
    Hope all is well with you and yours down at the ranch.  We think of
    you often.  Robin's high school "career" has started off with a
    bang.  Her 1st report card arrived yesterday and she pulled an A in
    Algebra 1B!!!!!! Much jumping up and down and happiness was seen.
    In fact, she pulled 5 A's, a B  and a B, so we're pretty thrilled
    with the track with which she has returned to.  Honestly, we feel you
    and yours were a big, big influence.  Robin mentions on a weekly
    basis how much camp helped and how she gets it now.  In fact, she was
    recently asked to tutor another student in her Algebra class during
    lunch time.
    Again, you guys have had a ripple effect in our lives and we think kindly of you all daily. 
    Give our best to everyone and hope to hear from you soon.

    Sincerely, your friends, Cindy, Mitch and Robin Epley
    Sacramento, California

    Robin reading on the River Beach!amathe0004.jpg (34129 bytes)

    Letter From A Mom:  (4/5/02)
         “Bo intends to attend your camp this summer and has a friend (a math whiz) who's also considering it. Bo maintained an “A-” average for the entire first semester of 8th grade! At the beginning of the second semester, Bo decided to conduct an experiment in Algebra. What happens if one turns in no homework for an entire month?  Result:  one can plummet from an “A-” to AN “F” in that short time period.    Experiment failed… Again, we will definitely be enrolling for this year's camp. Rumor has it that Rachel will also be attending.  Bo's performance in the first half of the year was a real tribute to you and your program. Bo is again doing his homework, but it's a tough climb back up.     Regards,   Katherine Reed
    Bo  ek_1_410.jpg (8939 bytes) at camp!


Pi Ranch on the Beautiful East Fork of the Russian River!
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