Dear My Favorite Teacher:
First off, thank you. Thank you for enduring years of schooling in which your teachers taught you how to teach. Thank you for accepting a salary that is way too low. Thank you for waking up every morning and coming to school, even on the mornings you didn't want to. Thank you for being one of the best teachers I ever had. You may never know just how much you mean to me, and I wish there was some way I could show you but nothing I ever do would truly so you my gratitude.
Second, your classroom wasn't just another classroom to me. Your classroom was a safe place. The place I could run to in my time of need. On more than one occasion I cried in one of your chairs or vented in your office, and you were always there to comfort and listen. I would leave my boring classes just to sit with you for five minutes of relief. You were a second mother to me. (Also, I'm extremely jealous that your kids get to have such an amazing woman for a mother.) I miss the happy anticipation I felt walking to your class, I miss the flooding warmth I felt stepping into your room, and I miss the countless (in the best way possible) minutes and hours of your teaching.
Next, I know teaching can be hard, and that you have to deal with rowdy students and annoying staff meetings. But I appreciate all the sacrifices you made and all the crap you put up with just so I could receive an education. It didn't go unnoticed. And even now that I'm out of high school, you're still my favorite teacher.
Finally, I say you changed my life because you did. You taught me more lessons than just what your curriculum required of you. You taught me how to expand my compassion, and how to recognize when people were sending me bad vibes. You showed me the importance of taking a breath (literally and metaphorically), and the consequences that can result from misjudgment. I know you have hundreds of students. I know I'm just one of many who adore you. But please know, no matter what, you have definitely changed one life. Mine.
Love, The Student Who Needed You