I am about to start the last week before Christmas break. I know what is about to happen. There will be gifts. Gifts from our students and their parents. I will be grateful for each and every one. I know my parents are not wealthy. I know that every gift I get represents a sacrifice on the part of the families that give them.
I will smile and love every single thing that I get. I write thank you notes and MAIL them to my students during the break. For some of them, it will be the first mail they ever get.
I have gotten everything from pencils to socks. My very first present as a teacher made me cry. I was teaching at a small private religious school. The young man’s parents cleaned the church and school to pay the tuition. They were far from wealthy. He was not my best student. But he taught me the importance of paying attention to details.
He made me two of those pot holders kids make with the loops. You know the weaving kits I’m talking about. One was pink, yellow, white, and green. The other was orange and blue, my college colors. His mom told me he made her buy two bags of loops so he could make the two-toned pot holder. He had listened to me talk about my alma mater.
I used those pot holders for years. Every time I took dinner out of the oven, I thought of him. Even now, he is a part of my classroom. I don’t know what happened to this young man. I wish I could thank him again for the gift that he is still giving me today.