Why I do what I do

This morning I received the following email about one of my preservice teachers who is currently student teaching. Some nice motivation to keep going.

Good morning:

Yesterday I had the pleasure of working with _______ at _____ Middle School. It was only her 4th day student teaching and her cooperating teaching was unexpectedly absent due to a family emergency; I was the licensed substitute in the class.

I am writing to express my my sincere and profound admiration and amazement with Ms. ______’s incredible teaching abilities. I was absolutely amazed at the ease with which she took over the classes, managed the students, taught lessons, engaged the students in discussions, and differentiated her teaching to those students with learning differences or behavioral issues; it was truly an impressive show of innate teaching ability, incredible application of best practices in teaching and a profound passion for her craft. She is a unique and talented new educator.

I have been teaching for over 15 years and never have I seen a new teacher – and neither in some experienced teachers – such a brilliant display of teaching and focus on student learning; it was as if I were in the class of a veteran teacher!

I am not one to write an email like this for the superficial reasons and I stress to you that I have corresponded with you because I sincerely believe that Ms. _____ is a unique and expertly qualified teacher who deserves recognition for what is truly an exceptional development of her teaching craft. 

Certainly, Ms. _____ will be a teacher we will hear about as a outstanding testament to the best that our profession offers.

I thank you in advance for your attention to this correspondence and I invite you to watch Ms. ______ in action in her classes as it is certainly an inspiring experience.

Best regards,

The only part I’d disagree with is that this preservice teacher’s skills are not innate, she’s worked very hard to develop her abilities, and fortunately, she is not unique. I’m regularly impressed with my students’ abilities to enact effective teaching during student teaching. We work hard to get them to that point. It’s extremely gratifying when their (and our) hard work is recognized.

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One Response to Why I do what I do

  1. Colin Seebach says:

    When I read this, the very first thing that I picked up on was the innate ability. I disagree with that notion as well. I worked very hard for the skills that I possess now. Congratulations on yet another exceptionally pre-service teacher!


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