Have You Thanked Your Teachers Lately?

Pic from rainbowstampclub.blogspot.com

Welcome to Techie Tuesday here at More Cowbell! Today we’re celebrating teachers.🙂

It’s National Teacher’s Day here in America. This entire week  is dedicated to our teachers, who shape the minds of our young ones.

If you’re reading this post, it’s likely you’ve had an effective teacher in your life at some point and we want to hear about it!

Did you ever have a teacher who made your young heart sing?

Who opened doors you never dreamed existed and showed you new possibilities about who you could be?

I want to give a shout out to the special teachers in my life:

To Mrs. Limetone

She was cranky with her room full of wild 5th grade boys but she LOVED books so she had me at “Hello.”

Mrs. Limetone opened the doors in my mind to poetry, making the Jabberwocky with its “frumious Bandersnatch” one of the funniest epics in my young world. Her story hour was magic, particularly during those golden weeks when she read The Phantom Tollbooth.

To Mrs. Westmoreland…

My lifelong love affair with the ocean began in her classroom during a semester of Oceanography. This was back in 1979 and that woman could do a mean Hustle!

She was the prettiest teacher I ever had and I remember watching her dance and thinking I wanted to be that glamorous when I grew up.

To Mrs. Mullen

She was the first teacher to tell me I was a great writer and she encouraged all her students to embrace their creativity. She’ll never know she fired big “name-in-lights” dreams when she put my reports up on the Superstar Wall with big gold stars on them.

To Ms. Iris Maybloom…

She brought art history alive. To this day, I actually know the difference between the Byzantine and Baroque periods. 

Plus, Ms. Maybloom wore the best jewelry EVER and is named after one of my favorite flowers.🙂

Finally, thanks to Ronald J. Kuback, may he rest in peace.

  • “Kuback” was crabby, funny, generous, moody, difficult and kind.
  • He berated his advanced placement English classes to “Identify, Define, Explain and Clarify. Tell me what you MEAN!”
  • He assigned “weird” books like W. Somerset Maugham’s Of Human Bondage and D.H. Lawrence’s Sons and Lovers, then challenged us to tell him what they really meant.

Mr. Kuback was singularly the best teacher I ever had and, more than anyone else in my young life, convinced me that I was a writer.

Here’s to all of my teachers who went above and beyond the call of duty to show their students who we could be if we just worked hard enough. May all of you that walk the Earth be enjoying a retirement richly blessed with the brightest of life’s gifts.

For Mr. Kuback, my high school luminary who died far too young…all your disciples know that you’ve been watching over us (likely to make sure we didn’t kill ourselves or use bad grammar). I hope you’ve been vastly entertained.

Thank you to the teachers of the world for gifts beyond price.

Do you have teachers and mentors that you remember fondly? (Or not so fondly?) Do you remember a special teacher, who took an interest in your dreams and pushed you to achieve them? Enquiring minds LOVE to know these things here at More Cowbell!

Jenny

About Jenny Hansen

Avid seeker of "more"...More words, more creativity, More Cowbell! An extrovert who's terribly fond of silliness. Founding blogger at Writers In The Storm (http://writersinthestormblog.com). Write on!
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30 Responses to Have You Thanked Your Teachers Lately?

  1. Chihuahua0 says:

    To Mrs. C, since I wrote my first short story within her classroom.

    To Ms. M, since we make each other laugh.

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  2. I did a whole series on this at Teachers & Twits and -as you can imagine – the stories are beautiful. I didn’t even realize it was National Teacher’s Day today. Wow. I hope you get a million gift cards to your favorite bookstore. Or at least a smile and thank you.😉

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  3. *wiping tears* – but this time not from laughing! What a wonderful homage, Jenny. Having been on both sides of the line as a student and later a teacher, I related to your sentiments in a number of different ways. I’m so grateful to the many inspirational teachers I had in my life (even crabbiness can inspire) and I would also like to attest that being a teacher was singularly THE most rewarding time of my professional life. There’s no greater satisfaction than helping students learn to believe in themselves!

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  4. K.B. Owen says:

    We just snipped some flowers from the garden for my youngest’s teacher. They don’t get paid enough to do their jobs. I have fond memories of a few very special ones! Thanks for the reminder, Jenny.🙂

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  5. Sherry Isaac says:

    I’d like to thank my Dirty Fight Teacher…

    I’ve been blessed with a number of fabulous teachers, and I’ve been blessed with a few dreadful teachers who, by being their horrid selves, have in turn shone spotlight on the great ones.

    Mrs. Lynne Hurring was my 7th grade homeroom and English teacher. She was on exchange with her husband to teach in Canada, and 2 teachers from our school went to the northern town of England from whence she hailed. I can’t remember the name but it was a great surprise to learn that there was more to England than London and the queen. Imagine.

    Mrs. Hurring was kind, talked to us like we were people, made our subject fun, challenged us with interesting writing assignments, but one day, shy little me–yes, there was a time–put up hand and made some sort of comment in some sort of class discussion. I don’t remember the discussion or my suggestion. What I remember is this: that day, in front of the entire class, Mrs. Hurring declared me clever.

    Out of all the ‘recordings’ that play in my head telling me to give up, i’m not good enough, Mrs. Hurring’s ‘clever’ recording sends the negativity scurrying back into the corner.

    Thanks for the opportunity to share, Jenny.

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    • Lynne hurring says:

      Hi -a note for Sherry from Mrs Hurring ( Lynne ) That was so fabulous to read Sherry thank you so much . Such a long time ago ( 1976/77 )Was just playing around on the internet with my name and found it . makes my teaching career worthwhile ! Thank you thank you !! I’m a mother to 3boys and a grandmother . Finished teaching early and lived in France for 10 years just back living in S E England I wonder what’s happened in your life Sherry

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  6. LauraDrake says:

    Mr. Rasmussen in High School English. Anyone who can get a room full of fidgeting ‘horomones with feet’ to love Shakespeare is special. I went on to college and took a Shakespeare class, to continue my love affair, and was dissappointed – the droning teacher taught at a lower level than Mr. R!

    He wrote in my year book, the immortal words of John Dunne: “To thine own self be true.” I’ve been working on that assignment ever since.

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  7. Julie Glover says:

    Not only have I had some fabulous teachers in my past, but three of my five family members became teachers. I am especially proud of them for their dedication and enthusiasm for learning. The English teacher among them is one of the first to get her hands on what I write so that I can benefit from her knowledge.

    I’ll give a quick shout-out though to Mrs. Schulling (your love of history became mine – you’d be proud that I got my bachelor’s in it); Mrs. Travis (thank you for letting me not read The Last of the Mohicans when you knew I read every other book); Mrs. McFarlane (you were a quirky bird but your excitement about math was contagious and you explained things so clearly); and Mrs. Glover (you didn’t just lead a choir, you led a group of crazy teenagers to learn the value of hard work and the joy of life; I quote you constantly).

    What a great topic, Jenny! Thanks for all of the wonderful teachers out there.

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  8. Amber West says:

    Teachers I’d love to go back and thank…

    Ms. Parker – Seventh grade English. She took my love of writing seriously. Not only that, she was writing a novel (that she didn’t tell the class about) and asked ME to read it. At that age, it was cool to have an adult respect my opinion.

    Mr. Reeves – Freshman thru Senior Year Latin, AP English Lit Senior Year. He was sarcastic and some even thought he was mean. But I loved him. I learned more about literature and poetry explication during my time in both his Latin and English class than any other book or person taught me. He was crazy smart, rebellious, and pushed me. He was one of the few teachers who knew when I was slacking and didn’t let me get away with it. In my Senior yearbook, he told me that the world would be my “oystah” when, not if, I actualized my potential. (He followed it up with “mmmmmmm…oystaaaaaahs”)

    And Mr K., because I am pretty sure he had a crush on me. Ha!

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  9. S. J. Maylee says:

    Teachers hold a very special place in my heart. My father was a teacher and coach before he retired. Teaching is in his blood, he hasn’t let it go. I still remember my preschool teacher, Mrs. Morrison. Preschool teachers are special. My MIL, once a kindergarten teacher (she stop teaching to raise her boys), stopped me one day after one of our many book conversations and said: you should write. I’d already been writing for some time, but was not taking it seriously. Her approval helped me to lift those wings just a little and take a step forward. Special people indeed.

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  10. eden says:

    To Ms. Brewald, whose years with the Peace Corp work perfected her Spanish, and made her a task master over our pronunciation. Last year, after years of volunteering in the latino community, traveling in Central American and getting engaged to a darling Panamanian, I wrote her a thank you card for putting my on such a rewarding path. She responded that she’s now retired by does tutoring for SAT testing. There are more high schoolers out there getting the benefit of her demanding style of teaching.

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  11. Although at my age I doubt I still have any former teachers living, I did get to go back and thank my best teacher (See Chester Tucker – http://davwalk.wordpress.com/2011/08/31/chester-tucker/) a few years ago. I’m married to a retired teacher and have a daughter and sister who both taught at one time. My dad also taught before he decided to go to medical school.

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  12. I’m still in touch with a professor from university who actually went above and beyond. I lost my best friend to a drunk driver very suddenly during my second year of university, and I missed a lot of class time. My statistics professor didn’t have to give up her time to catch me up. It wasn’t her responsibility, but she did it anyway. She also took the time to just check in on me and see how I was doing emotionally. I’ve been out of school a long time now, but she and I continue to keep in touch.

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  13. Reetta Raitanen says:

    Teachers need all the love and appreciation they can get. Especially junior high school teachers are dealing with students in a very difficult age.

    I’ve had the priviledge to have mostly great teachers. My elementary school Finnish teacher gave me an A and encouraged me to write. Sadly I didn’t appreciate being a good writer then and was miffed I didn’t get the best grade from history instead.

    My high school Finnish teacher who praised my writing and picked me from all the students to help judge our school’s story contest, and to judge in a panel of a national best book picked by students. She finally made me to understand that I had something going for me in the writing department.

    My high school philosophy teacher, who was a young woman recently graduated, really rocked. She listened to our feedback on what interested us and created content based on that and what the course plans demanded.

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  14. tomwisk says:

    I’d like to thank:
    Arthur P. Coggins, who tried to teach me algebra but instead gave me the basics of sailing in his stories.
    Jessie Henriques: She taught me Latin and gave me an appreciation of words
    Mariana DiRaimo: She convinced me I could write
    Sister Clementina: Who convinced me corporal punishment doesn’t work

    Like

  15. John Holton says:

    I wasn’t that fond of Latin and Greek, but loved Fr. Zimecki and Miss Keoughan, two of my teachers. Fr. Z used to tell jokes while we were taking Latin exams, and Miss K honestly cared about me and became more of a friend than a teacher.

    I had Mrs. B in junior year English and her husband two years later in college. I learned to love short stories in her class and how to write well in his.

    In general, the Sisters of the Holy Child Jesus were great grammar school teachers. Sister Anna Marie, who taught Math, had learned a lot of it from my grandfather, and shared his love for it and instilled it in me.

    And, to paraphrase Rhoda Morgenstern (from “The Mary Tyler Moore Show”), I was born a gypsy and kidnapped as a child by a roving band of Irish schoolteachers. My grandfather and four of his daughters (including my mother) were teachers, as are three or four of my cousins.

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  16. Jenny Hansen says:

    OMG, look at all these amazing thank you’s!! The More Cowbell Posse is full of rockstars.🙂

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  17. As a teacher, I thank you. I have a Pick-Me-Up file (yes, that’s what it’s called) filled with letters from parents and students. On those days when I wonder why I’m doing this, I pull it out. Incidentally, I now have a writing Pick-Me-Up file (yes, that’s what it’s called…)

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  18. Karen McFarland says:

    Doesn’t it feel good to boast about people who made such a difference in your life Jenny? I love that kind of stuff. And their praise is so deserving! I wrote a post a few months back or longer actually when I started blogging about one of my teachers. I had seen in the papers that he’d died. It sicked me. But it was healing to know that this teacher/coach was a well thought of man in his school and the community. People like that don’t ever leave you. There in your heart!🙂

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