Inspirational Teacher Poems, and Sayings.

Our Superintendent reads this to us every year.  It brings a tear to my eye every time I hear it.

Little Teddy Stoddard

derived from "Three Letters From Teddy"
by Elizabeth Silance Ballard

There is a story many years ago of an elementary teacher. Her name was Mrs. Thompson. And as she stood in front of her 5th grade class on the very first day of school, she told the children a lie. Like most teachers, she looked at her students and said that she loved them all the same. But that was impossible, because there in the front row, slumped in his seat, was a little boy named Teddy Stoddard.

Mrs. Thompson had watched Teddy the year before and noticed that he didn't play well with the other children, that his clothes were messy and that he constantly needed a bath. And Teddy could be unpleasant.

It got to the point where Mrs. Thompson would actually take delight in marking his papers with a broad red pen, making bold X's and then putting a big F at the top of his papers.

At the school where Mrs. Thompson taught, she was required to review each child's past records and she put Teddy's off until last.

However, when she reviewed his file, she was in for a surprise.

Teddy's first grade teacher wrote, "Teddy is a bright child with a ready laugh. He does his work neatly and has good manners...he is a joy to be around."
His second grade teacher wrote, "Teddy is an excellent student, well-liked by his classmates, but he is troubled because his mother has a terminal illness and life at home must be a struggle."
His third grade teacher wrote, "His mother's death has been hard on him. He tries to do his best but his father doesn't show much interest and his home life will soon affect him if some steps aren't taken."
Teddy's fourth grade teacher wrote, "Teddy is withdrawn and doesn't show much interest in school. He doesn't have many friends and sometimes sleeps in class."

By now, Mrs. Thompson realized the problem and she was ashamed of herself. She felt even worse when her students brought her Christmas presents, wrapped in beautiful ribbons and bright paper, except for Teddy's.

His present was clumsily wrapped in the heavy, brown paper that he got from a grocery bag. Mrs. Thompson took pains to open it in the middle of the other presents. Some of the children started to laugh when she found a rhinestone bracelet with some of the stones missing and a bottle that was one quarter full of perfume.

But she stifled the children's laughter when she exclaimed how pretty the bracelet was, putting it on, and dabbing some of the perfume on her wrist.

Teddy Stoddard stayed after school that day just long enough to say, "Mrs. Thompson, today you smelled just like my Mom used to."

After the children left she cried for at least an hour. On that very day, she quit teaching reading, and writing, and arithmetic. Instead, she began to teach children. Mrs. Thompson paid particular attention to Teddy.

As she worked with him, his mind seemed to come alive The more she encouraged him, the faster he responded. By the end of the year, Teddy had become one of the smartest children in the class and, despite her lie that she would love all the children the same, Teddy became one of her "teacher's pets."

A year later, she found a note under her door, from Teddy, telling her that she was still the best teacher he ever had in his whole life.

Six years went by before she got another note from Teddy. He then wrote that he had finished high school, third in his class, and she was still the best teacher he ever had in his whole life.

Four years after that, she got another letter, saying that while things had been tough at times, he'd stayed in school, had stuck with it, and would soon graduate from college with the highest of honors. He assured Mrs. Thompson that she was still the best and favorite teacher he ever had in his whole life.

Then four more years passed and yet another letter came. This time he explained that after he got his bachelor's degree, he decided to go a little further. The letter explained that she was still the best and favorite teacher he ever had. But now his name was a little longer. The letter was signed, Theodore F. Stoddard, M.D.

The story doesn't end there. You see, there was yet another letter that spring. Teddy said he'd met this girl and was going to be married. He explained that his father had died a couple of years ago and he was wondering if Mrs. Thompson might agree to sit in the place at the wedding that was usually reserved for the mother of the groom.

Of course, Mrs. Thompson did. And guess what? She wore that bracelet, the one with several rhinestones missing. And she made sure she was wearing the perfume that Teddy remembered his mother wearing on their last Christmas together.

They hugged each other, and Dr. Stoddard whispered in Mrs. Thompson's ear, "Thank you, Mrs. Thompson, for believing in me. Thank you so much for making me feel important and showing me that I could make a difference."

Mrs. Thompson, with tears in her eyes, whispered back. She said, "Teddy, you have it all wrong. You were the one who taught me that I could make a difference. I didn't know how to teach until I met you."



I Didn't Know
I didn't know that years of school and a college degree would be of little 
consolation when facing a room full of bright little eyes on the 
first day of school. I thought I was ready...
I didn't know that five minutes can seem like five hours when there is 
idle time and an eight hour school day far too short for a 
well-planned day of teaching.
I didn't know that teaching children was only a fraction of my job. 
No one tells you about the conferences and phone calls, faculty meetings and committees, paperwork and paperwork...
I didn't know that it took so long to cut out letters, draw and color pictures, 
laminate-all for those bulletin boards that were always "just there"...
I didn't know that I would become such a scavenger, and that teaching
 materials would feel like pure gold in my hands... 
I didn't know that an administration and co-workers that support 
and help you could make such a difference...
I didn't know that there would be children that I loved and cared for 
and stayed up late worrying about, who, one day, 
would simply not show up. 
And that I would never see them again...
I didn't know that I can't always dry little tears and mend broken hearts.
I thought I could always make a difference...
I didn't know that the sound of children's laughter could drown 
out the sound of all the world's sadness...
I didn't know that children could feel so profoundly.
A broken heart knows no age.
I didn't know that a single "yes ma'am" from a disrespectful child 
or a note in my desk that says "You're the best!" could make me feel like 
I'm on top of a mountain and forget the valleys I forged to get there...
I never knew that after one year of teaching I would feel so much 
wiser, more tired, sadder and happier, all at once.
And that I would no longer call teaching my job,
but my privilege.


The ABCs of Parenting
(Source: unknown)

Ask your child about the school day.
Begin your child's day with a nourishing breakfast.
Congratulate you child for doing well.
Discuss homework with your child.
Encourage your child to read.
Find a quiet place for your child to study.
Give your child responsibility.
Hug your child to build self worth.
Include your child in making simple family decisio
Join a library with your child.
Keep your child on a schedule that includes exercise and sleep.
Limit TV viewing by selecting programs with your child.
Make the time you spend with your child special.
Notice and discuss changes in your child's behavior.
Offer to help your child organize school papers.
Provide your child with good role models.
Question the activities your child shares with friends.
Respect your child's right to have opinions different from yours.
Share an interest or a hobby with your child.
Take time to listen to your child.
Urge your child to say "NO!" to unwanted touching.
Visit places of interest with your child.
Work with your child to set up rules of behavior.
Xerox and save records or articles that benefit your child.
Yield results by encouraging your child to do better.
Zoom through these ABCs again and again!



Unity Poem

I dreamed I stood in a studio
And watched two sculptors there.
The clay they used was a young child's mind
And they fashioned it with care.
One was a teacher, the tools he used
Were books, music and art.
The other, a parent, worked with a guiding hand
And a gentle, loving heart.
Day after day, the teacher toiled with touch
That was deft and sure.

While the parent labored by his side
And polished and smoothed it o'er.
And when at last their task was done,
They were proud of what they had wrought
For the things they had molded into the child
Could neither be sold nor bought.
And each agree they would have failed
If each had worked alone.
For behind the parent stood the school
And behind the teacher, the home.

(Author Unknown)


 We Left You At The Door

by James Singleton

We took you down to school today.
You're just beginning now;
Although this year you're five years old,
You seem so young somehow!
We didn't take you all the way,
For we'd been told before,
"Don't go into his room with him,
Just leave him at the door."
Up to this time we've always gone
Together everywhere,
And we have had a lot of fun
While traveling here and there;
But we well knew before it came, 
We're parted more and more.
So many times we will stand outside
And leave you at the door. 
You're growing up so very fast
It's hard to keep in step;
The fact of changing years is hard
For parents to accept.
You'll have to walk your path alone
No matter what's in store;
We'll bring you up to life's classroom,
Then leave you at the door.
While you were ours these tender years,
We treasured every day,
Full knowing that the time would come, 
When you would go your way;
And though this love will still remain,
Within our heart's deep care,
Our eyes will sting to see you go
And leave us at the door!




By a Child . . .

 When you thought I wasn't looking, I saw you hang my first painting on the refrigerator,
        and I immediately wanted to paint another one.

 When you thought I wasn't looking, I saw you feed a stray cat,
        and I learned that it was good to be kind to animals.

 When you thought I wasn't looking, I saw you make my favorite cake for me,
        and I learned that little things can be the special things in life.

 When you thought I wasn't looking, I saw you make a meal and take it to a friend who was
        sick, and I learned that we all have to help take care of each other.

 When you thought I wasn't looking, I saw you give of your time and money to help people
        who had nothing, and I learned that those who have something should give to those who don't.

 When you thought I wasn't looking, I felt you kiss me good night, and I felt loved and safe.

 When you thought I wasn't looking, I saw you take care of our house and everyone in it,
        and I learned we have to take care of what we are given.

 When you thought I wasn't looking, I saw how you handled your responsibilities, even when
        you didn't feel good, and I learned that I would have to be responsible when I grow up.

 When you thought I wasn't looking, I saw tears come from your eyes, and I learned that
        sometimes things hurt, but it's all right to cry.

 When you thought I wasn't looking, I saw that you cared and I wanted to be everything
        that I could be.

 When you thought I wasn't looking, I learned most of life's lessons that I need to know
        to be a good, and productive person when I grow up.

 When you thought I wasn't looking, I looked at you and wanted to say...

"Thanks for all the things I saw when you thought I wasn't looking.'"

          (Source Unknown)

While walking in a toy store
the day before today,
I overheard a crayon box
with many things to say.

"I don't like red!" said yellow.
And green said, "Nor do I!"
And no one here likes orange,
but no one knows quite why."

"We are a box of crayons
that really doesn't get along,"
said blue to all the others
"something here is wrong!"

Well, I bought that box of crayons
and took it home with me
and laid out all the crayons
so the crayons could all see.

They watched me as I colored
with red and blue and green
and black and white and orange
and every color in between.

They watched as green
became the grass
and blue became the sky.
The yellow sun was shining bright
on white clouds drifting by.

Colors changing as they touched,
becoming something new.
They watched me as I colored.
They watched till I was through.

And when I'd finally finished,
I began to walk away.
And as I did the crayon box
had something more to say...

"I do like red!" said the yellow
and green said, "So do I!"
"And blue you are terrific
so high up in the sky."

"We are a box of crayons
each of us unique,
but when we get together
the picture is complete."


Shane DeRolf 


It Matters To This One

As I walked along the seashore
This young boy greeted me.
He was tossing a stranded starfish
Back into the deep blue sea.
I said, "Tell me why you bother.
Why you waste your time this way?
There's a million stranded starfish.
Does it matter anyway?"

And he said, "It matters to this one.
It deserves a chance to grow.
It matters to this one.
I can't save them all, I know.
But it matters to this one,
I'll return it to the sea.
It matters to this one,
And it matters a lot to me."

As I walked into a classroom
The teacher greeted me.
She was helping Johnny study.
He was struggling - I could see.
I said, "Tell me why you bother.
Why you waste your time this way?
Johnny's only one of millions.
Does it matter anyway?"

And she said, "It matters to this one.
He deserves a chance to grow.
It matters to this one.
I can't save them all, I know.
But it matters to this one,
I'll help him be what he can be.
It matters to this one,
And it matters a lot to me."
-Author Unknown


"I Teach"

I teach because there is a great fulfillment that comes in
working with girls and boys.

I teach because I wanted to be a sculptor, and I can do so,
by shaping lives for the future.

I teach because I wanted to be an artist, and I can do so,
by painting dreams for children.

I teach because I wanted to be a musician, and I can,
in giving inspiration to children.

I teach because I wanted to be a historian, and I can in having
recorded something for the lives of great men to come.

I teach because I wanted to be a poet, and I can in writing
impressive passages of mankind.

I teach because of the reward I receive when a child's
frowns turns to smiles, or when he/she says, "Now I understand."

I teach because of the personal growth I receive each day as
I venture out on a quest for knowledge and techniques
to help my students understand.

I teach for it is in this where I can see the worthwhile
and true fulfillment of living.

Author: Unknown



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