This year at promotion a number of my students were honored. As we were handing out the diplomas, a teacher-friend of mine noticed me stuffing some extra paper in a few of them.
“Oh, I’m stuffing their nomination sheets into their folders. Even if they didn’t win, it’s nice to read nice things that someone else wrote about you.”
I thought the conversation ended there, but apparently my friend took my words to heart because I just got a copy of a letter that, apparently, nominated me for teacher of the year at our school (I didn’t win–our FANTASTIC science teacher won–and she is definitely an inspiring choice). The sentence that stood out the most for me was
“And she calls them “her kids” because each and every one of them is special to her. And because they know she values them, some of them perform only to make her happy…”
Now, I’ve often been asked why I have so few discipline problems (I’m youngish, and short, and…enthusiastic..so many people expect my classes to seem more chaotic than they are). I think this is why. I value each and every one of my students. Even the ones who stick noodles up one nostril to pull it out the other, or go home and “borrow” an Ipod from someone else (we got it back), or just generally have to struggle with school. I value and respect each and every one of them.
It was nice to hear someone thought the same of me.