Today is National Teacher Appreciation Day!
Where would we be without teachers? I don't even want to think about it! We have each been touched by various educators in our lives, both good and maybe not-so-good, but every one of them has contributed to shaping our minds and hearts.
My favorite teacher of all time was my Kindergarten teacher. Mrs. B was joyful, patient, kind, and incredibly gracious. I can still remember staring wide-eyed as she played the piano, taught us the alphabet, and positioned our desks in groups of four so that we were constantly challenged to either "not talk" or "get along".
This was my first experience of having to be friendly even if I didn't want to befriend. When you sit next to someone who isn't your BFF at the age of 6, this is a HUGE deal! (Besides, the boy who sat next to me, Alan, was known for his unnerving ability to inhumanly eat massive quantities of glue...and this horrendously grossed me out.)
Mrs. B welcomed me into my introduction to public education, and was the very first person to encourage me to be excellent simply at learning. This understanding has taken me far in life. This initial push to accelerate and achieve has become a foundation to my determination as a student. The ability to stay focused on learning for the sake of knowledge instead of drudging through the burdensome endeavor with a intangible goal kept almost entirely out-of-sight continues to keep me hungry for more.
I want to be a learner my whole life. I hope I am still seeking out truths, facts, and theories about all kinds of things when I'm old and gray and needing all my books in large print. Thank you, Mrs. B, for initiating my brain into the realm of formal education.
As a graduate student, there are still times I rely on those core fundamentals from Kindergarten: share with others, take time to rest, read the instructions, ask for help if you don't know something, listen well, and be kind.
Take time today to reflect on someone in your educational life that made a difference. Why did it matter? Why did it stick? And, what can you do today that pays that lesson forward to someone else?
Thank you, TEACHERS, for the incredible, daily impact you are having on the lives of others. You get to witness something that no one else sees, in a setting where there are as many challenges as there are opportunities. We gloss over your influence as if you are obligated to do well by our children, but the truth is, so many of you selflessly give out of your hearts and passion rather than sheer duty. Thank you for taking the time to make a difference. Thank you for taking the effort to listen to your class. Thank for taking on the challenge that too many of us are unable or unwilling to. You never know, maybe someone will write a blog of appreciation about you someday and it will help encourage another person to take a step towards education.
Thanks, teachers! A+