Recently Ms L, J's 4th grade teacher got engaged. The girls were a flurry of excitement over her sparkling diamond ring. J and friends attended her class last year but continue to swing by to say hello during recess. Not surprising considering how much they loved her. Ms L is in her late twenties, very pretty and has a million watt smile. That in addition to being a wonderful teacher. I was happy for her when J told me she was getting married to her former doctor.
A few weeks later J told me that she and her friend M were concerned for Ms L. Apparently, she looked sad and did not smile anymore. She cheered up for a bit when the girls stopped to say hello so they made it a point to do so more regularly than they had done before. I was curious to know what a bunch of ten year olds made of the change in Ms L. They had figured she was sad because of the engagement and it burst their bubble a little - looking forward to marriage is supposed to be a happy time. They were doing their part to restore the magic to her special time.
There is a human aspect to a teacher student relationship that goes beyond teaching and grades. These girls adore Ms L - she combines competence and femininity that they would be well served to emulate. She always took the time to enhance and personalize a boiler-plate lesson plan. Just like her, the kids in her charge were energized and wanted to exceed expectations from them.
That her former students would treat putting a smile on her face as their recess priority would not count in any evaluation of her as teacher, but that is the highest score a teacher could aspire for. Reading this article by a teacher prompted this post about Ms L.