Today – in the US at least – was National Teacher’s Appreciation Day. We’ve always been a part of these celebrations in the past; this year I think I may have missed something happening at school. I wanted to make up for that because children, and their parents too, are pretty close to the elementary school teachers – many of whom, are indeed women – so this fits into my week’s topic, too.
These teachers have a pretty special place in kids memories; unless…well, unless they use their unknowing power incorrectly.
We have had that happen…
We’ve had the rare teacher who just didn’t realize the impact she had, the power she wielded… Night terrors, anxiety, fear, a complete change in personality…easy to do to someone at a very impressionable 6 years of age. When brought to her attention she was quite taken aback and sincerely admitted that was NOT her intention. I can’t hold it against her forever. I do wish however, that she had taught older children, with whom she might have been able to relate better.
I remember with vivid detail my 1st grade teacher. Mrs. Leo. She was strict, she was not warm and fuzzy like our kindergarten teacher Mrs. Ward (who unfortunately left mid-year to have a baby and didn’t come back that year.) See, even years (and years) later, I still remember Mrs. Leo “the lion”… I will forget someday I guess – but, I digress.
What I really want to focus on, is the appreciation, for the overwhelming positive characteristics of the teachers. The ones who nurture, while commanding respect, generating admiration and genuine LIKE (even love) from their students. Those who easily, magically (maybe that’s their trick?) capture the attention of the littlest humans that we send off to school; the tiny ones who are not yet disciplined, who are still trying to figure out their capabilities, when their physical capacity to sit still for 15 minutes is infinitely difficult. “One two three eyes on me…” (whatever works and it does work!)
These teachers somehow, are able to motivate, inspire and encourage learning…for learning’s sake (not for mandatory testing although they do a damn fine job of that, too). Teachers are given access to fresh young minds and are able to start to mold them into lifelong students; students who want to learn more to absorb every bit and particle of information available to them.
That is the kind of power I am talking about – and these women, these teachers, especially elementary school teachers have an amazing power within them. I want to make sure that I share my admiration, respect and MANY thanks for them – today, especially – but every day. They have had an overwhelming positive impact on my three children, on me, too. We allow ourselves to fall in love with you over and over again and we will forever be in your debt for the power you have instilled in us.
~ Dawn aka Hat Girl
PS A personal shout out and thank you to: Mrs. Busch, Mrs. Ward, Mrs. Strucko, Mrs. Calabria, Mrs. Kloiber, Mrs. Hanna, Mrs. Millevoi, Miss Feeney, Mrs. Trotta, Mrs. Oswald, Mrs. Deeken – all of you and more have made it a wonderful decade and then some…