Celebrating Teacher Appreciation

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Madeline Beavis
The blog author as a third grader with her favorite teacher and in front of her school.

Kindergarten was where I first developed the idea of becoming a teacher. Other kids imagined themselves as astronauts or doctors or firefighters, but I found joy in the classroom with chalkboards and colored pencils. I’m sure my parents thought it was just a phase, but for the next 14 years I did not budge!

I’m very grateful for the educators in my past who supported my career choice and gave me the confidence to pursue it. An extra special thank you is dedicated to all the teachers and professors around the world who remain devoted to helping and guiding their students year after year, even during the challenges of pandemic learning.

Personally, my third-grade teacher, Mrs. Emanuelle, (pictured with me in the thumbnail image) has remained one of my biggest inspirations throughout my academic life. Walking into her classroom on the first day of school, I didn’t know how much more she would teach me beyond vocabulary and spelling. She was enthusiastic, tenderhearted, and creative, forming a relationship with each student so that they felt comfortable and safe in her classroom. For us, well, we both loved dogs! And maybe a love for man’s best friend wasn’t going to help prepare me for 4th grade or standardized testing, but my 8-year-old self was so excited to have something in common with a “grown up” that I was eager to learn from her.

Now as a college student, I often think back to my time as her student and how she, among many of my other teachers, served as a role model for what a good educator should be. Patient, understanding, adaptable, caring, and inspiring.

I’m sure almost every student has a special teacher in their past who motivated them to pursue their dreams and never give up. Take some time this week or any time of the year to show your appreciation for your favorite educators!

“True teachers use themselves as bridges over which their students to cross. Then, having facilitated their crossing, joyfully collapse, encouraging them to make bridges of their own.” – Nikos Kazantzakis

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