When I was in Grade 4, my teacher, Miss Butler, ended the year by giving everyone a personalized card that wrote about the unique things she saw in me in the classroom. As my parents owned a restaurant, she thanked my family for providing pizza for the class, and also acknowledged my sense of humor in the classroom (which was sometimes seen as a detriment in later grades). I call it a “card,” but it was a cutout on thick paper of a blue smurf because I loved the smurfs (don’t judge).
Everything about this simple card still sticks in my head today. The thought of acknowledging my strengths while knowing things I was interested in, and tying it all together in one card. I won awards in elementary school, but those memories are heavily blurred at best. But I can remember getting that card handed to me, the feeling I had when I received it, and how much I cherished it after. These things always stick with me, and it was the reason that I did the same thing for my elementary classes when I became a teacher. That one simple act of acknowledging me sticks out to this day.
This quote resonates:
When I talk to educators about the hopes for my daughter in a classroom, I share that she will walk into school feeling valued, appreciated, and you will try your best to not only develop her weaknesses but focus on bringing out her strengths. These are things, no matter the mandate, Miss Butler proved a student could feel not only with how she treated us throughout the year but with that simple gesture.
What little things did you experience as a student that you remember to this day?