Tuesday, May 7, 2013


This week is Teacher Appreciation Week.   There are many educators that have had a profound impact on my life.
I appreciate my kindergarten teacher.  On my first day of kindergarten, I knew that I wanted to be a teacher—just like that special woman, who greeted me with a hug, showed me the joy of reading and writing, taught me the value of playing with others, taught me how to walk in a line and generally loved all of her students in a way that made us better.  I attribute my knowledge that relationship is primary as a teacher to my kindergarten teacher.  In my profession I have worked to make relationship be the vehicle for all learning.  Thank you Mrs. Lavine!

I appreciate my second grade teacher.  She recognized that I needed a little (really a lot) of extra attention.  And she showed me that I was special.   That I was visible.  That I was important.  One school day I had a very important job.  I needed to take a note to all of the teachers in the building.  I felt 10 feet tall with my responsibility.  As an adult and now a teacher myself, who recognizes attention deprived students, I imagine that the note went something like, “Give this little one big praise for what a big helper she is.  And maybe a hug.”  I have done this myself as a teacher.  And I attribute my noticing and response to my second grade teacher.  Thank you, Mrs. Smith!

I appreciate my fifth grade teacher.  He spent extra time with me as I tried to figure out the difference between rotation and revolution of planets in our solar system.  This extra time provided me with a first “light bulb going off” experience.  This ah ha moment rooted in me a love of exploration and inquiry and helped me understand that learning is understanding and active.  I attribute my understanding that time is important in learning to my fifth grade teacher.  That questions and clarification while a learner is seeking understanding is something that a teacher can offer.  And that inquiry comes from within yet can be rooted in presence and in environment.  All of these things were offered to me by my fifth grade teacher.  I have used his good work in my own work as a teacher and a human being.  Thank you, Mr. Wood!

This week is Teacher Appreciation Week.  Is there a teacher who has had an impact on your life? 


  1. I hope all teachers appreciate those seemingly little things that mean so much to children, Deborah. You've just given perfect examples. What we remember is those small moments! Thank you!

  2. You've been lucky to have been inspired by these teachers.

  3. This has me thinking. A caring teacher touches lives forever. Isn't that what we teachers all strive for? Thank you for writing about the teachers whose impact you still feel!

  4. It interesting that your memories of the teachers are of how they made you feel. Isn't there a quote to that effect? I can't remember how it goes, but the message is you remember how you feel not the facts you learned. Wonderful teachers make a lasting impact on our lives.

  5. I appreciate you, Deb. Thanks for this inspiring post!

  6. 3 jump out at me right away - My 2nd grade teacher, Mrs. Luscomb, my 4th grade teacher, Mrs. Oette, and my 5th grade teacher, Mr. Hable. Each of these wonderful people took the time to let me know that they cared, that I mattered, and that they wanted to know who I was as a person! Thank you for reminding me of these people who impacted my life!