Parenting

Dear Teachers, We Appreciate You

Thank you written in a speech bubble with blue chalk on a smudged blackboard

Oh how I love thee; let me count the ways.

When I think about the teachers in my kids’ lives, I feel this combination of fierce loyalty and weepy tenderness. Strict, kind, nurturing, authoritative, year-before-retirement or fresh-out-of-college, I love all the teachers, thank you and amen.

Parenting is the hardest thing I’ve ever done. I feel like I need to say that again. Parenting is the hardest thing I’ve ever done, and knowing that each day my kids are sitting in classrooms learning how to get along and how to turn in an assignment on time and how to stand in line and take turns and respect authority fills me with sweet relief. Maybe we’ll be okay here. We aren’t stranded by ourselves on this terrifying journey. We have help. When I stop by the school and see children mostly sitting where they’re supposed to sit and walking from point A to B in an organized way, I realize the magic of teachers. They bring order out of chaos. I could not do my job as parent without the teachers in my kids’ lives.

Can anybody relate? Sometimes I get overwhelmed with gratitude that we’re not alone in shaping the future of our kids. And so…

To the teachers who use their too-short lunch break to meet with parents about how they can partner to help a child succeed, we appreciate you.

To the teachers who modify activities to meet the needs of special students, we appreciate you.

To the teachers who worry about their own kids’ struggles but still show up every day to take care of ours, we appreciate you.

To the teachers who spend time filling out extra paperwork for IEPs and evaluations, we appreciate you.

To the teachers who find creative new ways to motivate a child when everyone else has given up, we appreciate you.

To the teachers who exhort and inspire kids to achieve what they didn’t think possible, we appreciate you.

To the teachers who lay down the law and hold kids accountable when they fall out of line, experiment with new swears, or cheat on a test, we appreciate you.

To the teachers who bear bad news of failing grades or unruly behavior and care too much to let a child slip away, we appreciate you.

To the teachers who patiently answer our questions about new math and the various websites and logins for newfangled internet homework, we appreciate you.

To the teachers who tell us specific things they love about our kids and reassure us our babies aren’t psychopaths, we appreciate you.

We appreciate the teachers who partner with us to find answers when some of our people are struggling. The teachers who call us, meet with us during their planning periods, and tell us over and over the goodness they see in our kids. Sometimes when our eyes are too blinded by frustration to see the hope in a child, a teacher calls it out. Teachers are declarers of hope. They are encouragers. They educate and inspire…and not just their students.

I’m so grateful to partner with good teachers, because I could not do this alone.

Love,

Tired Mom of Three

 

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  • Amy Boyd

    Dear Melanie, I appreciate YOU! This is my 15th year as a teacher and every year I hope parents can see how invested I am! I do not have children of my own, and look at my students as if they were mine. Thank you for collaborating with the teachers in your life and for seeing and acknowledging the unseen work that we do every day. :-)

 

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