Curious, I opened it to find a notebook, some colorful pens, and a note from one of my teachers. The note said, “We are so LUCKY to have you as our counselor! Thanks for all you do!” I immediately went upstairs to the teacher’s classroom and thanked her for the gift. I told her that the note couldn’t have come at a better time; basketball is not the only place where madness occurs in March! She nodded sympathetically and said she understood; her students had been bouncing off the walls. When the bell rang, I thanked her again, then retreated back to my office to prepare for the rest of the day.
Looking back though, I made a glaring mistake. If I had been smart, I would’ve handed the gift back and said to the teacher, “Thank YOU for all you do.”
I’m not saying that as a counselor, I don’t deserve the recognition. Too often, I hear about counselors who go unrecognized for their efforts, or who are taken advantage of. I know of counselors who aren’t respected by their administration, and counselors who selflessly give of their time to help their students. Counselors definitely deserve to be acknowledged for all they do. However, I think the same can be said for teachers.
Think about it: when was the last time you praised your son or daughter’s teacher? I can honestly say that when I think back to my childhood, I can never remember my parents calling to praise a teacher. Argue with them, debate a point, or question a decision, yes, but praise? Teachers have such a difficult job, and they often do it with little or no recognition or admiration.
It made my day to have someone recognize what I do. In return, I would like to share what I admire about my teachers.Here are some things that make the teachers I work with amazing:
- Dedication. One of my teachers stayed at school until 5:30, just a student could complete her homework and go to an all-school incentive. Many of my teachers give up time that they could spend at home with their children, just so our students can get the love and help they need (that they may not get at home.)
- Perseverance. One of my 7th grade teams is squirrelier than the others. I mean, they occasionally bounce off the walls and cause some chaos. And yet, the two team teachers work tirelessly, every day, with the kids. If I were them, I probably would’ve thrown up my hands in frustration and crawled into a hole. Now, I do work with several of their students, but I can’t imagine working with all 30 of the kids at once. Power to that team.
- Humor. Working in a middle school has taught me that humor is essential to survival. All of my teachers have amazing senses of humor, and use it to their advantage in the classroom. From “phone prisons” to using dinosaur stickers on tests, my teachers know how to make their students laugh. And once they’ve got their kids laughing, their students want to come to school.
- Unconditional love. We have some kids that may exhaust us mentally and physically. However, my teachers embrace the students every single day. As one of my students said, “Whenever we start the day, it’s a blank slate.”
There are so many things that I admire about my teachers. They are at the “front line” every day with their students, working patiently and tirelessly to do what is best for their kids. I have no idea what I would do without these inspiring, caring individuals!
Thank you so much teachers, for everything you do, and for everything you bring to the school. I am really lucky to be working with all of you!