When we say it’s rewarding, we mean it.

It’s a cold, sniffly Friday morning.  Next week, state tests begin.  Students are tense.  Teachers are tense.  So our Dean of Students decided to have the kids write notes to the teachers they feel have made a difference to them this year.  I just found this stack of little orange love notes in my mailbox.  Here are my favorites.

“She motivated me to do my best work.”

“She inspired me to want to be a writer and do more with my love for writing. If I wasn’t in her drama class, I’d hate school.”

“She taught me how to be compatible with new people. To be patient. And that anything and everything comes from hard work and teamwork. Love you, Ms. Morrison.”

If any of these statements is even fractionally true, then I did my job this year, and I am so proud. 

I’m excited to say that, next year, I will be teaching both drama and language arts.  Stories, stories, stories – tell them with your body, with your voice, with your pen.  Tell them because they matter to you.  Tell yours because it hasn’t been told yet.  Read the stories of others, and make sense of them.  Put yourself in someone else’s shoes for a moment.  Stretch out.  Relate.  Communicate. 

That’s my job.  What a marvelous job.  And it’s difficult, it is, but I don’t care.  Because these little orange love notes, these little moments where I get a glimpse of the bigger picture, make everything worth it.  Can you spell?  Can you punctuate?  Can you tell if it’s a run-on sentence?  Can I hear and understand your voice?  Can you express yourself? Can you keep a straight face and show professionalism?  These things are important.  But motivation, inspiration, and knowing how to be a team player are even more important, and if my kids (a few of them, at least) are taking that away from my classroom, then I am overjoyed.


1 Comment

  1. I keep a smile box in my desk drawer filled with notes from students for those tough days when I need a reminder about why I chose this profession. When I got my stack of orange notes I added them to that box, but first I shared them with my student-teacher. A couple of the notes mentioned both of us, so I gave those to her and told her to start her own smile box. It’s those little things that make this job so rewarding.

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