My name is Kyle Clifford. I was born and raised in Menan, Idaho, a small town within driving distance of Idaho Falls, Idaho, as well as Yellowstone National Park and Jackson Hole, Wyoming. I attended Ricks College (now BYU-Idaho) in Rexburg, Idaho, where I earned an Associate Degree in art ( I have been drawing ever since I was old enough to hold a pencil, it seems). After graduating from Ricks, I served a full-time, 2-year mission for my church (the L.D.S. Church) in Germany. Upon returning home, I attended Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah, again as an art major, although I did not graduate. After returning home, I met and later married my beautiful wife, Julie, and we had 3 kids--Derek, Karolyn and Natalie. After working for several years, I went back to college, finally graduating from Idaho State University with a degree in Secondary Art Education, with a minor in Social Studies. I started teaching at Madison Junior High in 1982, and have been at the same school ever since (though not in the same classroom). In 2001, I had the privilege of traveling with 12 other people from Rexburg to China, spending 2 weeks there and enjoying every minute of it. It really was one of the high points of my life (next to getting married and having a family, of course), and really broadened my understanding of and appreciation for other cultures that are distinctly different from my own. In 2009, I joined a group of teachers from my district for a 5-day tour of Boston and Washington, D.C. That was a real thrill--to see many of the places first-hand that I teach about in my U.S. History classes. There's nothing like "being there" to gain knowledge about and insight into certain events--insight that can't be gained from just reading about them. I enjoy teaching because of the interaction it gives me with the younger generation, and because of the opportunity it gives me to keep learning.