Monday, August 17, 2009

What The Teachers Did Right

Our church is hosting a "Teacher appreciation" luncheon for the elementary teachers at our school across the road.
I am bringing crackers.

As I drove home from the grocery store, it occurred to me that crackers is a teeny tiny, too small of a thing to bring to the teachers who invested so much into the lives of my daughters, nieces and nephews.

They pour their lives into my children for years and I bring them crackers?

That's not a fair trade-off.

If Jae, Casey and Abby's teachers were right here in front of me, I would tell them this:

1. Thank you for the field trips, even though they were a lot of trouble. Most were educational, but they all created wonderful memories.
2. Thank you for requiring 30 minutes of reading 5 nights a week. That graded "homework" created a love for reading like no other assignment. You let them read whatever they wanted to and let them keep their own time-sheet. It was homework which created hours of close family time as we lay side-by-side reading books.
3. Thank you for using encouraging endearments and giving them affirming nicknames.
4. Thank you for laughing loudly when they are funny.
5. Thank you for not laughing when they would be embarrassed.
6. Thank you for playing with them at recess and occasionally eating with them at lunch time.
7. Your lesson plans which included art and music were worth the trouble. We talked about those often at our supper table.
8. Thank you for noticing that she needed glasses. How in the world did I miss that?
9. I am grateful that you have not tolerated mean and screaming co-workers in the other class rooms. Your professional peer pressure has kept the standards high.
10. I have been inspired as I observed you show God's love to kids who have never seen it or felt it before.
11. You daily teach and role model some of the most important lessons which are not found in the text-books. Important things such as... how to work through friend-squabbles, how to treat another child who does not wear deodorant and why we should give valentines to every child in the room. Many of the friendships formed in those classrooms have followed them throughout their life.
12. I really appreciatle how you encourasged me to keep "doing music" in their classrooms. I would have quit in a heartbeat if you hadn't told me what a big deal it was to the kids.
13. Your soft touch on their arm or their head has often spoken much louder than your words.
14. Even today, years after leaving your classroom, they love it when they appear in your doorway and you stop your class to introduce them as "one of your favorites".
15. Thank you for letting all of Lauren Lee's classmates skip school for several days after her death. They all desperately needed the time playing together in our yard.
16. It's odd to say that a good memory can be recalled from a child's funeral, but I will forever be grateful for the large number who filed in and sat together at Jae's funeral. Thank you for sobbing with me at such a loss.

Each of my children's paths were nurtured for hours in your care and I truly am grateful for your help as we formed them into the beautiful young women they now are.
They may look ordinary but they are the beloved daughters of the King of all Creation.

This first day of school, as you look out across your classroom full of fresh faces, remember that you are one of the most powerful people in this world.
Your influence will live for generations.

With deep appreciation
and crackers........,

Jae, Casey and Abby's mom

1 comment:

Rhonda Rae said...

Thank you for "doing music" with us you have no clue how much so many of us (myself included) looked forward to that. Plus with out that silly song from like 4th grade how would i ever remember my state capitals lol.