One of the winners of a minor Academy Award was thanking the people who aided him in his career when, at the end said, “…and I also want to thank my teachers- not all of them!” Isn’t that the truth! Lucky for me, my 2nd grade teacher wasn’t my first. Had that been the other way around I might not have remained in school. Worse yet the 2nd grade teacher stayed on and tormented me all throughout my 3rd year. After that it was a mixed bag- some good, many poor and a few exceptional. Or, was it just me?
What made that teacher so great? What characteristics did he/she possess that you remember so well, that placed them far beyond the others? And did you ever have the chance to thank them?
Sadly and to my shame, I never thanked my top three most excellent teachers. My 8th grade teacher developed dementia and did not fully understand me when I awkwardly attempted to thank her many years after I sat in her classroom. She led me to believe that I was smart enough to succeed in school. I also missed out on thanking a college professor for her direction as I was floundering in deciding on a new major. She was a giant of a woman, literally as well as figuratively. She stood 6’4″ and captivated her students with her dramatic style and deep love for her subject matter. I never even thought to thank a high school teacher who challenged me to become a better creative writer. He seemed unapproachable and I never did.