Wednesday, January 27, 2010


Hope your Wednesdays went by easily and that you felt appreciated and loved.

I was discouraged the other day about one of my 9th grades, and my colleague asked one of the students from that class to give me a hug and tell me how much she appreciated me. This student (code name MD) is the least likely of all of my students to want to do such a thing, and I cringed as I heard the question. MD was predictably resistant, making faces and "um"-ing. My colleague pushed her: "Jesse's having a hard day. She's been talking to me for the whole last 45 minutes about your class. She's worried about you guys and she really needs to know that you appreciate her." MD interrupted at this point, stamped her foot, and raised her voice to say, "She knows how much we appreciate her!" as if appalled that anyone could doubt it. It was the best affirmation I may have ever received.

I just realized that maybe you guys don't all do this self-doubting thing as much as I do. But if you do, let this be a gift to you all: the relationship that you have with your students does not go unnoticed, no matter who you are, no matter how inadequately you (think you) do your work. You work hard, you love hard, you get up every day and show up whether it's raining or you feel grumpy or whatever and you offer whatever it is you've got. They notice it. They appreciate it. They have no idea that you don't know that. Trust it.

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