Saturday, June 11, 2011

Last Words

As I sign student yearbooks, I ask them to sign a notebook of mine. I tell them I'll need their whole name so when they become famous I can retire from the money I make by selling their autograph on ebay.

Reading their entries is, by turn, moving, hilarious, motivating, and thought provoking. Here are some especially memorable entries from this year. (Don't be appalled by the inattention to the rules of grammar, spelling, or punctuation--their entries were voluntary and hasty first drafts since others were clamoring to write.)

First, apparently US History is weird:

Secondly, there are some cool perks to being a teacher. A. promises me NBA tickets, and L., a discount on any plastic surgery I may want:

T.'s hyperbole makes me smile--I've taught her soooo much!!:

A big surprise was the long entry (longer than most of his classwork) from M., one of the students involved in stealing my sodas. My heart melts at his accepting of academic and behavioral responsibility, his indirect confession and apology, his tacit understanding that I feel like a failure when my students don't do well:

Then there are a few entries that touch my heart and make me feel the year was successful, even though J. remained aloof and alienated and A. was content with her 73%:

And last, though there are many sweet words about me personally and "your my favorit teacher (sic)" entries, D.'s and T.'s mean the most: D's because I really do spend so much time and energy on lesson design and T.'s because he's one of the brightest people I've ever met and my daily fear was not challenging or engaging him:

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