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The Cub

The news site of Ludlow High School

The Cub

The news site of Ludlow High School

The Cub

Mrs. Zianio’s Journey To AP History 


In the dull halls of Ludlow High School, where students often drift in and out of classes, one room consistently is filled with lively discussion and a welcoming vibe. The reason is the wonderful, charismatic AP history teacher, Mrs Zianio. 

There is never a time you will catch her in a bad mood or not wandering the halls making every kid feel special. Her goofy spirit just lights up a room and the stories she shares create a sense of bond everybody thrives for. 

With her intensive knowledge of United States history and passion for teaching, she gets her name around. But, she is more than just a history teacher. She is a mom, friend, colleague, wife, and ex-soccer coach at our lion’s den, and without a doubt wears every single one with pride. Along with all these lovely roles she plays, she is also a fellow alumnus, and those colors truly show the brightest.

“She is a true fashionista and a nice teacher to be associated with,” junior Anabella Castro says. Anabella’s comment reflects the general sentiment among the students, but she is not the only one who can rave about this modern-day “Rosie the Riveter.” The seniors this year could probably go on and on about her and how she made a lasting impact on them creating a spectacular senior show which just goes to show her hard work and commitment for all. She continues to take on tasks knowing she is a busy woman but that’s just who she is, the first to jump into action. 

The way she speaks about history shows how passionate she is about her job and that just makes you want to buckle down and put your listening ears on. The Cold War may sound boring or listening about Alexander Hamilton might put you to sleep, Zianaio is always right on top of it making sure everybody is engaged and that her style of teaching is mixed for all. 


Throughout Zianio’s 22 years at LHS, her unwavering commitment to her students’ success are untouched. Throughout those years she taught U.S history. During these 22 years there were two very important years of Zianios’ teaching career which she still continues. That is when she taught the AP course when Mr. Fanning’s kids were taking it so he didn’t have to teach his own kids which would be awkward and potentially have its risks. 

All AP courses are a different level of teaching and that was something Zianio was ready to give back to Fanning once his kids were out. But, of course, since then, a lot has changed in the course. 

The idea about an honors-level course instead of just AP had come up. She proposed this idea about 10 years ago to get her feet wet with moving up the ladder to one day teaching AP.  Since that got approved, she has been teaching the honors US History with great dedication. While the honors level course was comfortable with her, she decided she was ready for the challenge of AP just this year, when the beloved old AP teacher Fanning was closing his books. Behind this closed chapter of Fanning’s legacy, Zinaios was just creaking open. 

Overall the change from honors to AP was exciting for her but alongside that it was intimidating. She knew taking on this course was going to take her out of her comfort zone and be a challenge. Through this intimidation and change from such a free open class in her honors classes to a more strict schedule, junior Mia Caralho thought “she prepared us well for the test and took on this course like nobody else could.” Her honors class which she continued to teach alongside AP included a lot more open discussion and time to talk about more current history while AP she had to inquire about a new way to teach which was strictly to teach to a test by a certain time period. This transition highlighted her ability to adapt and grow as an educator which most aren’t able to do. 

She hopes to continue her AP journey for years to come and continue to challenge herself with the the course. 

Future improvements

While others may have no suggestions for this influential teacher, Mrs. Zianio is always looking for ways to improve. While she wants to make sure she is teaching to the test she felt like she spent too much time thinking about what type of questions were going to be on this year’s exam. She spent very little time delving into projects and having in depth discussions around the history topics.

Her goal is to be able to talk a little bit more about history and find more time for just history discussion to unpack all the crucial moments history has taught us that maybe don’t fit into the test mold. Projects are also a big thing for her to be able to fit in because it is a part of her honors classes which helps students engage with the material, especially during challenging eras. Through these projects, she wants to make history come alive in ways that traditional textbooks can’t capture. She feels she wants to continue to teach to the test because that is the end goal of the AP course but includes some of these other things so she feels she is really teaching the importance of history. 

Without a doubt she is going to turn the hardest AP class into the easiest and students are going to not only pass the test but be able to learn from the most influential teacher out there and be inspired because I know, I was.

She was not just my history teacher, but she was the one who shaped my future history mind, and instilled a sense of love for learning and a whole new appreciation for the world. 

Her class will for sure continue its booming reputation and her students will be finding themselves scoring above average on the exam, no questions asked. 

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Comments (2)

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  • J

    Jack FavataJun 7, 2024 at 10:10 am

    Great article! Mrs. Zianio is not just an amazing teacher but an all around amazing person. Truly one of the best in the building!

    • M

      Mrs ZJun 8, 2024 at 11:21 am

      Oh my goodness!! This made my year! Mostly that I was recognized as a fashionista 😂