Friday, May 24, 2013

Senioritis with a dash of sweetness

So the seniors have been driving me (and everyone else) absolutely bonkers. It's frustrating when everyone seems to be making the push for them to do well and graduate but them. However, they're taking their finals now, and then for the last month of school I have two extra free periods! Hurray for more time to actually get my work done during school!

What was nice this week was that a couple of seniors gave me little parting gifts. One girl, who is just the sweetest thing (and a darned good writer) gave me a homemade cupcake, saying it was a thank-you "for being such a great teacher." She and her twin sister gave them out to a whole bunch of teachers that day, and we all were just so touched by their thoughtfulness.

After school, a student stopped by to give me a card. I taught him two years ago as a sophomore. He's a brilliant young man (seriously, he's amazing at everything that he does and is really going places), and I remember that when report cards came out for that first term, he was indignant about the fact that mine was the only class in which he'd gotten an A rather than an A+. I told him that he hadn't reached perfection yet. But eventually he managed to forgive me, and he and I have made sure to catch up and chat every now and then. He's also done Drama Club with me. The card was such a nice gesture, and was really what I needed at such a crazy/frustrating time of year. He said:

Thank you for all that you've done for me throughout high school. This note started off as a thank you for writing me a college recommendation letter but it's about much more than that. You were the first teacher to really challenge me. I think we argued about my grade at least twice a week, but I needed that. And I guess only an A is not the end of the world. Then our Festival play was legendary, so thank you for letting me be a part of that. We got robbed at this year's festival, but I know we'll do better in the years to come. Thanks for everything!

It's a strange feeling, seeing these kids getting ready to go off to college. I taught a number of them when they were little sophomores and I was a brand new teacher who didn't know what she was doing half the time. So I'm grateful that it seems like I at least didn't screw it up too badly. And now I get to be the proud but scared mama bird, watching them leave the nest. At the same time, I too am preparing to leave this school in search of new challenges. It's interesting to think how, though we're at different stages in our lives, these students and I did a lot of our growing up together. And they taught me just as much as I taught them.