We Were Meant to be Teachers!

Classroom Management Strategies and other Teacher Worthy Ideas

“Pass it on”

After all of my years of teaching in both public and private school and in private industry, I’ve often wondered if I made any difference in my students’ lives?  While our electricity was out earlier this morning, I decided to do something different – I read a book!  🙂

In my old copy of A Cup of Comfort for Teachers, I found this wonderful article for my teacher friends who are beginning a new year with new students and their families.  Beginning on p. 86, I found a wonderful article entitled, “Pass It On.”  I honestly felt that I was reading about my formal teaching experiences and wondered if I truly challenged and encouraged any of my former students in 4 states.

As I read this article by Michele Griskey,  I was reminded that parents have stopped me in our local Walmart and said how much their child enjoyed having me as a teacher – even to the point of speaking loudly to everyone standing in line about how much I understood and encouraged her daughter.  A former Student Teacher stopped me in a local Hobby Lobby and told me that she learned so much about the wonder of being a teacher because of her time in my classroom.  A grandmother saw me at another store and told her friends about how much I understood her grandson.  A mother of a daycare child from about 35 years ago saw me at a local hospital and said how much she enjoyed having me as her son’s day care director.

To quote Griskey:

“As the din of children’s chattering and laughter disappeared down the hallway and the school buses roared out of the circle, in an otherwise empty classroom, two people worked quietly together – a young woman and a nine-year-old girl.”  The young girl (Griskey) became a teacher of college English because of the influence that young woman teacher had on her.

One of her former college students, Ben, who eventually became a teacher himself said to her:

“Most of my course work is great…But sometimes I feel like we are being taught to put students in boxes.  Shouldn’t we just let the children be themselves”  Shouldn’t we encourage that?”

With the recent push to achieve higher academic standards that don’t allow for creativity in many areas, I’ve heard current teachers express the same sentiment.

Griskey goes on to say, “I sometimes wonder whether I spend enough time with my students, whether I inspire them to love learning, whether I am an effective teacher.  I may never know what, if any, impact I’ve had on many of my students, whose lives are connected with mine for only a short period.  But when I see someone like Ben learn and grow, I realize that my greatest contribution to any student is my time.”

So, to all my readers and teacher friends who are meeting your new students and their families,

spend time with your students and let them know that you do care and really want them to succeed in school and in the rest of their lives.

If I could, I’d give each of you a yellow rose to encourage you and to let you know that you are in a wonderful profession that is often not rewarded in ways that it should..

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