"FOR LEADERS & TEACHERS" NOVEMBER 2000 - DECEMBER 2000
December 29, 2000
It is always amazing what a small part of life is taken up by meaningful moments. Most of them, they are
over before they start, although, they cast a bright light on the future and make the person who originated
them unforgettable." The King from the movie Anna and the King
--- Submitted by Rhett Larsen --- Colorado
December 27, 2000
This is a poem for students to read and think about when they do not take responsibility for the choices they make.
I make my own choices everyday.
No one else controls what I do or say.
Good choices - bad choices - it's up to me.
I choose to decide what my life will be.
When my choices are wrong, when things go bad,
I can yell, get angry, hit, or be sad.
I can blame my neighbors or my brother,
Or point at myself, not someone other.
I can make excuses; say you're not fair.
I cannot tell the truth; say I don't care.
Or I can do the right thing; just be nice.
Learn so I won't make the same mistake twice.
December 20, 2000
Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do
Are in harmony." Mahatma Gandhi --- Submitted by Molly Callaghan --- Pennsylvania
December 18, 2000
I talked with two teachers just the other day,
It sure was interesting to hear what they had to say.
One was complaining about all the paperwork that she had done.
The other was excited about how well the school year had begun.
One told of a new student, who enrolled in her class that day,
And how he couldn't read on level or his letters he couldn't say.
The other was so concerned about the child, who couldn't count past eight,
And wondered what she could do to reach and motivate.
One belittled the poorly dressed student, who was in her room,
Saying she wouldn't pay attention and fell asleep that afternoon.
The other told me of a child, whose parents had split apart,
And how much it had affected her learning from the very start.
One told me of the little boy, who constantly broke the rules,
And how he was my problem now, since I was principal of the school.
The other asked me for some help with a defiant student, too.
She wanted to get the parents involved, in hopes that she'd improve.
One said she didn't have the time for all that in-service stuff.
She had a master's in education and that was quite enough.
The other told me of an article in a journal she read last night,
And what recent research said about teaching to left brain and right.
One was angry with the number of dittos she always had to run.
She considered learning work, there's never time for fun.
The other invited me to her room to watch the students who
Were thinking and creating, and problem solving, too.
One was bragging that the whole textbook she had already taught,
Although it didn't seem to matter if the students learned or not.
The other told of experiments and new methods she did try,
And not just asking who, when, and where, but what if and why?
I wish I had the answers for the differences between these two,
For both are so important to the educating we do.
I guess one feels that teaching is a job and nothing more,
While the other loves the challenges that always find her door.
December 15, 2000
I always knew that my teachers cared, but what happened today made that even more obvious. I wasn't feeling too well in my last period, Journalism class, and I had my head down. My teacher noticed this and throughout the class she kept coming over to check on me and even brought me a cup of water.
It was such a small effort but it really meant a lot to me. At the end of the day, my teacher wouldn't let me drive home. She had me sit with her in her classroom until I felt better. I told her what was bothering me and she told me stories and positive things about myself.
When I finally felt better, she walked me to the lot and I really saw how worried she was about me. She kept telling me to drive carefully and hesitated even letting me leave yet.
Just that one hour that I spent with her meant so much to me. She was more then just a teacher, she truly cared about me and wanted to make sure I was 100% okay to go home. She is an amazing teacher and I really look up to her. I hope someday I can be as wonderful a teacher as she is! K.B., Age 17 --- New Jersey
Thanks to all of my HS teachers this year and last.
I wouldn't be as happy as I am, if it hadn't been for you!
December 13, 2000
A mother once asked Gandhi to get her son to stop eating sugar. Gandhi told the child, "Come back in two weeks." Two weeks later the mother brought the child before Gandhi. Gandhi said to the boy, "Stop eating sugar". Puzzled the woman replied, "Thank you, but I must ask you why didn't you tell him that two weeks ago. Gandhi replied," Two weeks ago I was eating sugar." Author Unknown --- Sent in by A.P. --- California
December 4, 2000
Don't be scared.....be prepared!" Melony Jones --- Submitted by L.L., Age 14 --- Georgia
December 1, 2000
Seek knowledge from the cradle to the grave." Prophet Muhammed --- Submitted by Z. Patel --- NW, South Africa
November 29, 2000
A Few Kind Words
You know the quote, "No matter where you go or who you become, never forget those who helped us get there." Well this quote ties up with me and I'm sure a lot of other people too.
Have you ever heard, "People come into our lives for a reason, a season, or a lifetime"?
Well, there's this teacher that I know, love, and care about. I'm not going to say teacher because it doesn't fit right; a friend. I mean, a friend doesn't fit right either. I guess the best way to describe her is an Angel sent by God.
When I met her, my seventh grade year, it wasn't during my down point in life. Actually my life was going pretty smooth for me. Then a year passed and my teenage years just totally sank, but I didn't want to believe it. My grades were bad, my attitude toward life was bad, and I was disrespectful to teachers.
I couldn't see that I was falling, but she could. She knew something was wrong, that I just wasn't myself. I remember crying to her, telling her my life stunk and how I just wanted to die. She told me that I shouldn't say that and no matter how hard life got she would always be there for me. She told me she loved me. She told me how much she cared.
After we talked, things went up hill for a while, but then things got worst. I disrespected her, got into trouble at school and at home. I would tell her that I was going to change and do better. Well I did for at least a week and just went back to being bad. I told her this two or three more times and it just ended up in the same results.
I let her down and that was the worst kind of pain I have experienced. She never waved at me in the halls or talked to me anymore. I knew why and I wanted to take it back so bad but I knew I couldn't. I was depressed and angry with myself until the sixteenth of February.
Mom and I had a long talk with my teacher, or should I say they had a long talk with me. Actually my mom stayed out of it and let her do the talking, which I thought was a bad idea because I knew what was coming. She yelled and yelled at me. I didn't want to listen to her because I knew she was right.
She said, "Bre, what does this 'L' stand for that I'm showing you?" I didn't answer. She kept asking and demanding an answer, but I never told her because again I knew she was right. Finally she said, "Bre you know what it means. You just don't want to see it. 'L' stands for Loser! That's exactly what you're showing me. You're showing me that big 'L' instead of what should be on there, the 'W'." You know?
At that time I hated her more than ever. I couldn't believe that someone I loved and cared so much about would cut me down right in front of my eyes. It hurt to hear that come out of her mouth. My heart totally sunk. I remember thinking, "Bre, she isn't telling you this for you to hate her. She's telling you this because she wants you to see what you are doing to yourself."
I kept fighting my mind. I didn't want to admit I was a loser. I didn't want to be a loser in her eyes, but I had to accept the fact that she was right. I was heading in the wrong direction. She opened my eyes and made me see what I was doing to myself.
I never told her that I loved her for cutting me down, telling me I was a loser, and most of all making me see. I now see the reason she was brought into my life. She came to provide me with guidance and support, to aid me physically, emotionally, and spiritually. I now have many opportunities to tell her I love her and appreciate what she did for me that night.
November 20, 2000
I am a second year teacher, teaching at the high school from which I graduated. My perspective has come full circle, and though I have always held my former teachers in the highest of esteem, I now have a new found respect for them.
I have noticed how easy it can be to become discouraged and wonder why we continue to do this almost impossible job. Why do we spend countless unpaid hours grading papers and sponsoring clubs and sports? I look to my high school years to express my reason.
Although I was luckier than many children, my home life left a great deal to be desired. School was my escape and I purposefully
became very involved in after school activities to take up my time. If it hadn't been for those teachers who spent their time as Cheerleading Coaches, Student Government Sponsors and Annual teachers, I don't think I would have turned out as successful as I am today.
So, if you are a teacher who after a tiring day questions why, know that you do touch lives, and that is why I decided to join your ranks. Angela Howard --- Florida
November 17, 2000
I have the unlimited capacity to not know what can't be done." Dr. Larry Lezotte --- Submitted by Teresa Werth --- New York
November 15, 2000
As a teacher, I will forever be grateful to my student who never stops asking why. It may seem too much at times, but I know that I have been blessed by a student who keeps asking why. For every answer I give, he asks me why. It keeps me on my toes, ever truthful, ever creative. It has reinforced the life lesson that we should never be afraid to ask why and we should never, ever stop asking why. So to Tristan, thank you! I'm sure he would answer me with, "But why, Teacher?" M.B.S. --- Parañaque, Philippines
November 8, 2000
I never allow my schooling to get in the way of my education." Albert Einstein --- Submitted by A. Cath, Age 15 --- Massachusetts
November 6, 2000
Those who educate children are more to be honored than those who produce them; For these only gave them life, those the art of living well." Aristotle --- Submitted by Evette Smith --- Kingston, Jamaica
November 1, 2000
As I was sitting at my desk, desperately trying to finish up some paperwork before the end of the day, I had
one student in my room making up some work. He was a very talkative child and I had told him to remain
quiet and finish before the bell rang.
About 5 minutes before the bell rang, he stopped working and said,
"I sure do like coming in here."
I teach Special Ed, so that made me curious as to why. I asked, "Why?"
His response "You always listen to me."
I said, "Well, today I couldn't because we both had work to do."
He said, "Yea, I know, but if I didn't have make up work, you would have put yours away. That's why I like coming in
here. You don't talk to me much but you listen good."