The Parent Email That Made My Week – Teacher Talk

This Parent’s Email Made My Week

And I Don’t Even Teach His Child

Last week was a rough one.

Nothing in particular made it so rough. It just was. It was the kind of week that made me want to get my purse and jump out the window…from my second-floor classroom…during the school day. My teacher friend one room over says she knows I’ve really been pushed to the edge when I use the words purse and window in the same sentence.

Positive Parent Email - The Gifted Gabber

On Friday evening, exhausted and weary, I gave my school email one last check. I saw I had a reply to the parent email I sent on Friday. The email included a last name I didn’t quite recognize, but I didn’t think too much of it since I teach 140 or so students each semester and have many names in my parent contact files for the weekly parent email I send.

Hi Amy,

You must have my email by mistake. My kids are not in Spanish class. In fact, I’ve never heard of ******* Middle School. 

If you wouldn’t mind, please remove me from your list. But, by the way, you seem like you are doing a wonderful job. I wish more teachers were as proactive, engaged, and communicative as you. I am sure you are making a real difference for these kids. 

Best, 

*******

This parent email, friends, made my whole day. It made my whole week. Those last three sentences trumped all other sentences – from air, from screen, and from paper – from all the other days. As a teacher, I often feel this overwhelming desperation for someone to tell me I am doing something right. Of course, no one seems to think twice to tell a teacher (or anyone in any field of work) what he/she is doing wrong, these days. But how often do I – or do you – go out of the way to type a few kind words to someone in regards to his/her professional efforts?

No, this man does not know my true teaching skill or ability. He doesn’t know if I know my forehead from my backside when it comes to teaching. But he acknowledged something that I and so many other teachers want to be remembered for regardless of our students’ test scores, data reports, or evaluations.

Effort.

An average-size word with a large strength.

Don’t we all appreciate recognition for how hard we try at something regardless of the final outcome?

I’m always quick to praise other teachers for their efforts as I know how much heart, soul, time, and energy is involved in the teacher role. However, I realize that I don’t go out of my way nearly enough to acknowledge the efforts of people working other professions and jobs as life swirls around me. And I should start. Really, I should.

After all, isn’t a little effort supposed to go a long way?

Linking up with:

Saturday Soiree (Fridays)

 

8 comments

  1. Lisa (mummascribbles) says:

    Ahh what a lovely email to receive – it’s good that you happened to check your emails one last time so that you could go to bed with a smile on your face. I need to send a very similar email to a venue that we used last week and in particular one member of staff that was running round like a nutter for us! It’s often the little thank you’s that can make our days! Thanks for linking up with #TwinklyTuesday

  2. Nicky Kentisbeer says:

    Fabulous. Remember to put that email somewhere safe so that you can re-read it on the ‘purse and window’ days. I do feel for you as I can only imagine the selection of feedback you get. I love to be able to thank my daughters teacher at the end of each year. Nice to meet you at #twinklytuesday

  3. Debbie says:

    I got a real lift just this week from a former student on whom I had no idea of the impression I must have made with her. Sometimes the smallest of things will mean the most…

    • The Gifted Gabber says:

      You are right about that. Just when I feel I’m at the end-of-my-rope, some little small thing happens or a student from a long time ago pops up in a store or even with a visit to my classroom to remind me that all of the stress does make a difference, even when we don’t know it.

  4. Emily says:

    So true. Most jobs are thankless and it brings such joy when someone takes the time to say something, anything positive.

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