October 1, 2021
“You always find your way back Home.
Home means something different for everyone, for me, Biddeford has always been home.
I grew up in Biddeford with my four siblings: John, Dominic, Nick and Sarah Jane. I did spend some time away as a school teacher in both Rhode Island and Connecticut. I was called “home” in 1978 to work at the Saint Joseph School until 1992. I transitioned to the Biddeford School System to teach English as a Second Language from 1992 to 2009 and loved every moment.
A creative, innovative, perfectionist is how my sister Sarah Jane would describe me. I taught students in kindergarten from Vietnam and Cambodia who didn’t know a word of English. When they went on to first grade, they were flourishing and speaking full sentences. Sarah Jane was Superintendent at the Biddeford School System and loved seeing them cross the stage as Honors Students at high school graduation. I was delighted to see these children thrive because they wanted to be successful and were motivated.
To this day, when we have young visitors at our house, I’ve been told I go into “teacher mode”, which I think is pretty remarkable for someone who’ll be turning 100. I’m proud I still have that innate passion because it’s hard to recall things when you’ve had such a long life.
My favorite subject to teach was Math, but I also loved teaching outdoor education. It was such a unique course because we spent a Friday - Sunday using the outdoors as our classroom. It provided an enlightening education for students and the lessons revolved around our setting and were able to use the environment for inspiration. I suppose I enjoyed that part of teaching so much because it was kind of like traveling.
I love to travel. I’ve enjoyed places in the United States like Hershey, Pennsylvania but very little compares to the International travels I’ve enjoyed. I’ve been to Spain, France, and Bermuda but my favorite trip was to the Virgin Islands. I enjoyed the islands so much, I booked a trip so I could indulge in their beauty again.
Reflecting back over the last century can be hard for me sometimes because so much has happened. I feel so special to be celebrating turning 100, but it doesn’t mean much unless you do something worthwhile. I’m really looking forward to honoring this milestone birthday, mainly because I know I’ll get to enjoy my favorite thing: ice cream. I’m not picky about flavor, I enjoy them all and I savor every single bite.”
Lucy Poli is celebrating her 100th birthday, please join us in wishing her a beautiful birthday as well as a happy and healthy year ahead!