A Thank You Note to a Student

1 May

This academic year is quickly coming to an end. This week, classes ended, and, next week, final exams will be given. It is a busy time of year, and just about everyone is glad that it has arrived. Students and teachers are ready for a few months without lectures, assignments and tests.

I finished up one of my survey courses and was packing up while the students filed out of the room. I am certain that many of them were glad that they would not have to take more history. However, one student, who always sits in the back, walked up to me.Cumberland

He said that he could not let the semester come to an end without telling me how much he enjoyed the class. He said that he learned a lot about American history and told his parents about some of the stuff he learned. He also said that I was the best teacher he ever had and wanted to thank me for everything I had done.

I thanked him for the kind words. It was not enough, but I did not know how else to respond.

Through the years, people have asked why I teach. They talk about how it does not pay enough. They talk about how I could be doing a lot of other things. When I see students sleeping in class or playing on their phones, I wonder the same things.

However, I was reminded why I teach. It is for students like the one who thanked me for introducing him to the wonders of history.

Teachers do not get many moments like that one. We do our jobs and hope that the students are learning something. Often, we forget why we do the job. Well, we do it because helping students learn is a fulfilling experience.

Now, I say thank you to this student for helping me remember that.

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14 Responses to “A Thank You Note to a Student”

  1. Lea May 1, 2015 at 02:22 #

    So glad that the student took the time to stop and offer due appreciation. All of us have had so many teachers who have worked so hard to educate us who we never stopped and thanked.

    • Rick May 1, 2015 at 02:38 #

      It was a thoughtful gesture that I greatly appreciated. It also made me think about all of the people that I did not thank.

  2. shutterbugshea May 1, 2015 at 03:08 #

    Good teachers are of great value,they can set the course of a young persons whole life.
    You touched that students life in the most positive way !
    We need more like you!

    • Rick May 1, 2015 at 03:58 #

      Thank you. I’m sure there are others who did not feel the same way.

  3. Bantering Ram May 1, 2015 at 05:09 #

    I think society in general doesn’t quite appreciate teachers as much as it should. So it’s always nice to see something like this. Must be fuel to keep going, Rick.

    • Rick May 1, 2015 at 14:20 #

      It definitely made me feel better about the job I am doing.

  4. Andrew Petcher May 1, 2015 at 06:47 #

    I wanted to be a teacher. A history teacher. When I graduated at the age of 21 I realised that I wasn’t sufficiently mature or world wise so went in a different direction. Later when I was mature and world wise I couldn’t afford to change. I have always regretted not having the experience of teaching. How wonderful it must be to get such a response as you did – like getting a double pay packet that month! My daughter is a teacher and she loves the job.

    • Rick May 1, 2015 at 14:22 #

      I never thought I would find a job that I liked. Then, I happened upon one. What does your daughter teach?

      • Andrew Petcher May 1, 2015 at 14:28 #

        She teaches young children age 5-12 and specialises in Science. She didn’t get science skills from me, I was rubbish and always leaned towards the arts!
        I always liked the jobs that I had otherwise I might have thrown it in and gone teaching after all!

  5. John S May 1, 2015 at 23:09 #

    Fantastic! It’s that sort of thing that keeps you going.

    • Rick May 2, 2015 at 02:09 #

      Thanks. It was an awesome thing to have happen.

  6. Marilyn Armstrong May 1, 2015 at 23:31 #

    Talk about time flying, I remember the post where you were talking about classes starting for the year, wondering what this crop of student would bring. I had a few teachers who changed my life. A couple in high school, a few in college. I think I let them know how much they meant to me. I’m not sure all of them believed me, but I meant it.

    • Rick May 2, 2015 at 02:09 #

      I always heard that when we get older time goes by faster. I am beginning to believe it.

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