Monday, June 5, 2017

End of Year Thankyous

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   Ending a school year runs through my veins. Once a teacher, always a teacher. I hope each one of you who have ended or are in the midst of completing the year with pizzazz have a lovely summer break wherever it may find you. I remember both the excitement and the fatigue.

  This year my oldest granddaughter attended second grade in a new school and she's had
a fabulous year. This isn't about the school, but a tribute to the impact that teachers make on their students. I thought you would like to know. This teacher started the year in part of her literacy curriculum by reading aloud Sharon Creech's wonder of a book, Love That Dog. Well, those who know me know that I love poetry, so now I was in love with this teacher! But that's not all. She not only read the book aloud, but the class studied each poem and each poet, then began writing poetry in those styles. Wow. To have Ingrid come home to show me poems written in the styles of Walter Dean Myers and Valerie Worth was a gift worth having. I began to think her teacher was Ms. Stretchberry in disguise!

 I've read lots of poetry to Ingrid and her sister, but this teacher and her approach, however it played out in the classroom, has made an impact on Ingrid that I imagine poetry will often be something she will turn to. She still writes in her journal, she still makes up rhyming songs, and she still turns to a book I own that I also bought for her classroom last fall at their book fair. It's the recent anthology created by Kenn Nesbitt and Christoph NiemannIt includes familiar and not so familiar current and past poets and poems. After I gave it to the classroom, Ingrid says her teacher read from it every day, and there was a list to sign up for students to read it during silent reading time. Nothing like making something important- a list of whose turn is next!
      Nearly every time Ingrid has come to visit, she pulls out the book and reads more poems, sometimes sharing with me, often reading silently. During that time, all of a sudden she will laugh, and say "listen to this one. Sara (her teacher-they use first names) read this one and it is so funny." I sent the book home with her this week. She says, "maybe for the summer, maybe for always. . ."
 This is why I'm writing tonight. I'm thinking of all the Ms. Stretchberrys of the world who, like my granddaughter's teacher, has given something they might never know they gave, a passion for something. 
 Thank you!

26 comments:

  1. Gratitude for our work is the best gift we can receive! I was stopped by two parents at the end of the year, thanked for my work in the library and how it impacts their children. I serve 1200 students, and often worry about reaching individuals in such a large population in which remembering names does not come easily. Those mothers made my year!

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    1. I agree, Chris, and love that those mothers took the time for thanking you. Hurrah for that.

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  2. I had a lovely conversation with the grandmother of one of my students who visited our class today. I hope you share your post with your granddaughter's teacher- it will mean so much to her!

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    1. I plan to. How nice for you, too. I did talk with her the last time I picked up, and gave her a gift.

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  3. Awwww....such a beautiful slice, Linda. Yes, by all means, be sure to share this post with your granddaughter's teacher. She needs to know the profound effect she has had on her -- and you!

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  4. That Ingrid gets a double dose of amazing teachers. No wonder her love of poetry explodes!
    Bonnie

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    1. Thanks, Bonnie. It's been a terrific year for her and I am happy about it as you can tell.

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  5. This is inspiring! Ingrid is a poetry lover for life. What purposeful work you and Sara have done. Lucky Ingrid!

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    1. It's joyful to see Ingrid grow in her love of poetry and books, Julieanne. Thanks!

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  6. Linda, how lucky for Ingrid to have two such important people in her life - people who love and understand the impact poetry can have on a person's life. Those seeds planted in her will only grow.

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    1. Yes, I think so, too. Hurrah for great teachers!

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  7. Ingrid has been blessed to have the passion for poetry instilled in her at such a young age. Those seeds will flourish.

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    1. I'm hoping she will continue to have teachers who love poetry, like you, Margaret. Thanks!

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  8. What a great experience for Ingrid and her teacher. It sounds like they (and the other students) were able to share something very special n that classroom. Thank you for sharing this!

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  9. I think you planted the seed of poetry in Ingrid, then the teacher simply had to nurture that seed and allow her to grow and bloom. What a great year for Ingrid!

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  10. The things I miss most about teaching are sharing poetry with and reading aloud to a class of children. Fortunately, I have two "grandgirls" who love to have me read books to them!

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  11. Ingrid's teacher exemplifies why teachers do the work they do - it's about reaching into the hearts and souls of the children entrusted to us, and sharing what we love (the magic or words or numbers or science or...) with our students.

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  12. Thank you Jana, Elsie, Elaine and Tara. I know that I am a part of Ingrid's joy of poetry and books, but her teacher helped her make a huge leap this year, and as you see, I am grateful!

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  13. What a great slice, Linda, giving thanks and telling us about Ingrid's love for writing. She is a budding, young poet so I am sure that warms your heart. Thanks for mentioning One Minute to Bedtime. I totally forgot the name of the book and I wanted to buy it for my now late-to-arrive grandbaby. I guess I have time now.

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    1. Thanks, Carol. Sorry that baby hasn't come to the party yet. Yes, get this book, and don't forget Lullaby and Kisses Sweet, too! Thinking of you. Exciting time ahead!

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  14. How lovely to take time to specifically note what a teacher has done. I think you're right: the impact on Ingrid will last a lifetime. How fortunate she is to have all of you.

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    1. Thanks, Mary Ann. It really was a special year.

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  15. What a gift Ingrid received from her teacher - a lifelong passion for poetry! I love thinking of her sitting and reading poems to you, and then notebook in hand. writing her own poems. I had to purchase One Minute to Bedtime after I checked it out from the library. Time to take it to Jack's house. We just finished his rather lengthy Mother Goose.

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  16. Thanks, Ramona, it's always fun to love books with Ingrid and Imogene! Love that you're starting that path with Jack and Teddy, too.

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  17. How wonderful. What a beautiful post!

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