Tuesday, January 19, 2010

To Teach is to Change a Life... (Or something cheesy like that.)

I have been blessed with amazing teachers throughout my life. These teachers are probably why I want to be a teacher. So tonight I would like to pay a short tribute to them.

It all started with Mrs. Burr, my kindergarten teacher. (I guess it really started with Skye, my pre-school teacher, but I don't actually remember her. In fact, I don't even know if that's her name.) Mrs. Burr let me stay after school to help blow up the alphabet people. She gave me a talking-to when I believed lightning was going to strike me in the bathtub. She lovingly sent me to the office when a bee stung me in the hallway.

Next was Mrs. Matiea... ok. I couldn't spell her name in 1st grade, I can't spell it now. And Mr. King. They were great. Mr. King gave me my first role on stage, Belle Star. And boy, did I love being Belle Star. He also told me he'd vote for me when I ran for president. Still working on that one.

Then was Mrs. Jensen. Another gem. I really only remember her yelling at me one time for spilling orange juice on purpose, but my parents say she was absolutely fantastic.

I had others in between, but the next ones I really remember are all from 6th grade. Mrs. Landry, Mrs. Meech, and Mrs. Meyers. Math, English, Music. These were the teachers that stuck up for me when I happened to have a habit of being a tattle-tale. Mrs. Meyers was the teacher who taught me about backwash. But also, and more importantly, loved me and showed me my worth when I didn't make the select all-city choir that year.

7th and 8th grades. Two of my most important teachers. Mr. Routt and Mrs. Farnell. History and choir. It would take me a year to explain all of my great memories from these two amazing people. They are the main reason I'm doing what I'm doing.

High school. So many great teachers, but really two (again) stick out. Ms. Owens and Mr. Atman. Choir and Physics. I don't know if I remember very many lessons Mr. Atman taught on physics (and he taught a lot), but I do remember when I came into class the day after tragedy had struck my young, 16-year-old heart and he told me that I was loved by so many people, but most importantly God. At a public school. And Ms. Owens showed me again and again and again what it is to truly make music with a group of people.

If you've stuck with me this long, you should probably find a hobby. Ha. This is mostly just for me to look back on when I'm actually a teacher so I can remember what it's like to change people's lives.

College. So many. This is MUCH more recent so it would be hard to fully explain all of them. Dr. McBride, Dr. Wright, Dr. Thompson, Dr. Adams, Laura, Dr. Shank. I think that will do for now. 4 out of 6 of these teachers have (multiple times) asked to have lunch or coffee with me or me and my friends just to see how we're doing. Somehow I have found a place where people actually care about me and not what my grades are or how well I sing. They care about my relationship with God. They want me to succeed in life more than they want me to succeed in my major. And for that, I will be forever grateful.

I can't imagine what my life would be like if these teachers had not been in it. Super mushy, I know. But I gotta remember these things, somehow.


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