August 3 – did i really?

10/365 – people to thank who’ve had on impact on me. As it’s been mentioned, a lot of former students say that I have made a difference for them by impacting their life in some way. I must also, during this year of gratitude, throw out some names of students that have had an impact on me. The very first student that got me emotionally was Melissa. I remember teaching her in my classes back in the 90s at Burnett Secondary (or maybe it was a junior still then) in Richmond. I honestly thought Melissa did not like me as a teacher because every opportunity she had to question something that I brought up during lectures, she took. I must also acknowledge that this was in my early years of teaching and at that time, I too was learning about pedagogy. So whenever Melissa would ask a question – especially those that I didn’t have an answer to, I would respond that I didn’t know as I really didn’t know how to make up answers (back then) LOL but I could look into it – and I did; however, I often felt I had disappointed her in my teaching. So it has been a few years since Melissa has graduated and I am in my office after school and there is a knock on the door. I go to it and there is Melissa the 20 year old and she gives me a card. She tells me that she is going to step away and would like me to read it. I’m confused – and also scared – more questions about Law? Psychology?? LOL However, it was a handwritten card where she had told me how much of an impact I had on her learning and how I allowed her to question/challenge things and I was respectful and how she learned so much. It also said that she didn’t have the words to orally tell me but this was a way of letting me know the difference I made. Of course, I got teary-eyed because the one person I didn’t think I had an effect on – I actually did and I learned that day that no matter who is in my class and how they may be responding to my teaching, I am making a difference and I thank you Melissa for letting me know that I am affecting learning on many levels and I also thank you for that card – I still have it!!


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