Before scheduling classes, students suggest searching for instructors on RateMyProfessors.com to make sure classes are a positive experience and if possible, taught by people who actually care about their students. There have been times, in both high school and college, where I’ve come across some frustrating instructors. You know the type – people who just go through the motions without any passion or genuine desire to help others.
While there are a lot of intelligent people in the world, I believe that it takes a special person to succeed as an educator. Growing up, I was privileged to have several teachers that touched my life beyond anything that could be learned in a textbook. They went above and beyond what was expected to show their students that they cared. Even though I have since graduated from high school and started a new chapter of my life, I often think about my former teachers, send them the occasional email and visit when home. I will always be appreciative for the role they’ve played in helping me to succeed and because of that, I wanted to write a thank you note to teachers everywhere:
Thank you. Thank you for caring about your students’ lives beyond the four walls of your classroom and thank you for going the extra mile. From engaging lessons to taking the time to speak to students after class, it is clear that to you, teaching is more than giving exams or assigning homework. You teach to help change lives and your efforts do not go unnoticed. Thank you for staying late to write letters of recommendation, supervise club meetings and hold study sessions. I know you work long days and your willingness to sacrifice some of your own time to help students and better the learning experience is incredible.
Because of your warm smile and kind heart, students trust you and value your opinion. While I know you didn’t go to college to earn your counseling degree, your care for the children you teach means occasionally serving as a sounding board. It means a lot to know someone is listening and when a teacher shows that they care, students feel less alone. Our willingness to open up is a testament to how much we trust you, so thank you for making your classroom a safe place. Sometimes, things outside of school get in the way of our learning and your desire to know us as human beings makes it easier to understand why school can be challenging at times.
A good teacher isn’t the teacher who gives everyone perfect grades, but rather someone who presents students with opportunities to challenge themselves to succeed. Thank you for being a teacher who pushes your students to learn while offering a guiding hand to help them along. It’s hard to learn alone and your support in reaching goals helps build confidence and makes for a more pleasurable learning experience.
Most of all, thank you for believing in us when even when we don’t believe in ourselves. As an educator, you choose to see the best in your students and encourage us to follow our dreams. Without teachers who believed in me, I would never have even applied to my dream school let alone chosen to attend. After all these years, I am finally starting to believe what you told me all along: I am capable of being successful and making a difference. Thank you.
A Former Student