If you didn’t already know, I’m a high school English teacher by day. Today is the last day of school and it’s always bittersweet. By this time, I’m anxious for the break but I’m also always sad to see students go. I teach freshmen, sophomores (and some years, juniors) so there’s times when I’ll have a student multiple years. Inevitably, I connect with some and seeing them grow, mature, and develop into young adults makes me so emotionally come graduation. They’re leaving. And I don’t know if I’ll ever see them again.
There’s nothing you can really say to an 18 year old about what awaits them. Life is something you just experience on your own. I worry about the struggles they’ll face, but I’m always hopeful that they’ll stick to what’s right and remember that there’s people that care for them.
That’s what I try to instill in my students. People care about them. And the choices they make not only affect them, but those around them, those that care about them.
Every time my students leave my classroom, I yell out a “Be safe!” They tell me that that is something they remember about me, me constantly telling them to be safe. It makes them feel cared for.
This particular class is special to me. There were a couple of students that I had their freshman and sophomore year and who were my teacher’s assistant their senior year. I’ve become close to them and I’m sad to see them go. Whenever I do have students that I grow particular close with, I always tell them to stay in touch and some do, most don’t. This year I was pinky-sweared and promised that they’d let me know how they’re doing as they embark on their new adventures–one to the Marines, one to an east coast college to play baseball, and another to our state university.
I’m lucky enough to have many, many memories that will stay with me forever and before the seniors left, they managed to leave me (and the rest of their teachers) one more positive memory by way of their senior prank. Instead of doing something immature or detrimental to themselves or the school, they decided to have some fun while helping the community. Outside my room down my hall, a large group of seniors gathered in front of the balcony and proceeded to take off their shoes and throw them to the seniors who had gathered below. They in turn also took off their shoes and it wasn’t too long before we saw shoes everywhere! At first, we weren’t sure what was going on or what the meaning of the prank was but then the seniors explained. They were donating all the shoes to a local homeless shelter! The story even made our local news!
I love my job and I love my school. Like any job, there are tough days, but moments like the senior prank and occasional notes of thanks make it so, so worth it.
I hope everyone has a great weekend!! Anyone stateside have Monday off?? <3 , helly
–Do you have a teacher that you fondly remember?