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Max Hosier




Max Merle Hosier was born September 16,1922, in Fairbury, Nebraska, son of Forrest and Olive Roland Hosier.  He married Janice Aleene Kimsey on August 4, 1946, in Farragut.  Max Hosier died at age 90 at his home on Saturday, June 8, 2013.

Mr. Hosier served in the U. S. Navy during World War II and for over twenty years in the Navy Reserves.  He received his bachelor's degree from Peru State Teachers College and both his master's degree and doctorate from the University of Northern Colorado, Greeley.  He taught fourth through sixth grades at Price Laboratory School and later was a professor of reading and language arts at the University of Northern Iowa, retiring in 1988.

Having taught at the Laboratory School from 1951-1965, Max Hosier left an indelible mark on the many students who passed through his classroom at ISTC and the Campus Laboratory School. 


From Lynn Nielsen (SCHS 1965): Max is the reason I became a teacher.  The year was 1957 and Max was my fourth-grade teacher.   Like countless other children, I liked him.  Also, my hair was red like his.  Simply put, he was a role model and I connected with him.   I connected with his steadiness, his even temper, his warmth and affection for children. 


To this day I vividly remember minute details about our classroom, what we did and what we learned.  While I have retained in my mental scrapbook vague images of other school years, I retain memories on the pages of my fourth-grade scrapbook as if they were replayed on high-definition wide screen TV.  


We studied Australia and the other continents that year.  When my classmates and I learned the names of all seven continents we got to go into Max’s office and choose a National Geographic Map—one we were allowed to actually keep.  I chose Africa. 


We learned about animal classification, about marsupials, reptiles and amphibians.  We not only read about reptiles but we observed them first-hand as one of the classroom garter snakes we captured from a nearby creek, was frequently loose in the classroom. 


We also studied Switzerland and read stories about Heidi and her friend Peter.  We learned about Swiss watches, about mountains and goats and caves.  We actually took a field trip to a nearby cave where I took my first pictures with my mom’s box camera.  We learned to play chess and held a classroom tournament.  We elected class officers and were introduced to parliamentary procedure. 


Later, around the age of 30 and a doctoral student, I reminisced about Max with my major professor.  Much to my surprise, my professor and Max had briefly taught in the same building years before.  I told my professor how Max had unknowingly shaped my ambition to become a teacher.  I described my vivid memories of fourth grade, how much I learned and how Max had connected with me.


I wasn’t prepared for the response.  My professor nodded smugly saying, “Oh yes--but his messy bulletin boards…” Evidently they were not exemplary.


I have no memories of Max’s bulletin boards.   Nor do I remember anything messy about our classroom although it probably was.  But good fourth-grade classrooms should not be made for analysis.  They should be made for children and I was one child that didn’t notice or care about the fine points of bulletin board design or classroom clutter.  I did however notice the connection I had with Max, a connection that influenced my entire professional life. 

 From Barbara Severin Lounsberry (Class of 1965): 

Maps and Good Citizens: Max Hosier

In 1956, I had the good fortunate to be in Max Hosier's fourth grade class.  He was the first male teacher I had, and I will remember his many kindnesses always.


Dr. Hosier loved maps.  Pull-down maps were on the blackboard that spanned the whole front of the classroom.  But that wasn't enough for Dr. Hosier: he wanted us to have our own maps.


He also wanted us to be “Good Citizens.”  Now I realize he was doing civics education.  Each week one student was named the class's good citizen—and as a reward was given a large map.  I was thrilled when I got mine.


Dr. Hosier was a congenial teacher, but what I most remember is the fact that he went far beyond that “extra mile” to help me at the end of the year.  As many of his students will remember, the big treat at the end of the year was the trip to Niagara Cave in Harmony, Minnesota.  Along the way, we were treated to history and art.  We stopped at Ft. Atkinson to see the territorial fort and in Spillville to see the Bily Brothers' famous carved wooden clocks.  I learned later that Henry Ford tried to buy one of the clocks from the brothers—but they refused!


If Max Hosier was an ordinary teacher, I would have missed this eye-opening trip.  You see, I came down with impetigo, a skin infection, the week of the trip and was infectious.  I couldn't go to school or board the bus with fellow classmates.


But Max Hosier rescued me.  He knew that the other fourth grade—Mrs. Holmberg's class—was going to Niagara Cave the next week.  He arranged for me to go with that class; however, he did more.  Knowing that I wouldn't know anyone in the other section—the sections never really mixed back then—he went too, so I would know at least someone on the bus.  It was a great day which I still remember vividly.  Now I realize, too, that Dr. Hosier could have kept his Saturday to himself.  He'd just been to Niagara Cave and had been there countless times.  However, he wanted to ease the way for one of his students.


Today I still love maps, try to be a good citizen, and I've written on Spillville—and it all comes from Dr. Hosier.

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