March 2021 SOLC–Day 27
A huge thank you to Two Writing Teachers for all that they do to create an amazing community of writers and a safe, welcoming space to write, learn, share and grow.
Dear Mrs. Minzy,
I imagine you’re surprised to hear from me. I’m not even sure if you’ll remember who I am or who Connor is, but I wanted to send you a long overdue thank you.
More than twenty years after you spoke them, I still remember your words. It was Connor’s Parent Teacher conference. I think it was in Kindergarten, but you also taught him in second grade, so it might have been then. At any rate, Connor was a bit of a chatterbox, and I distinctly remember what you didn’t say and what you did say.
You could have said, “Connor calls out too much.” or “Connor needs reminders not to talk during work time.” I’d bet that on some days, you probably were thinking, “Connor won’t shut up!”
Instead, you said this, “Connor has such strong verbal skills and when he learns to manage them better, they’ll be a huge asset to him.” I remember being so appreciative, as a parent, with how you phrased that. How you saw potential rather than merely problem. It struck me powerfully then, years before I even considered becoming a teacher. Now that I am a teacher, it influences how I communicate with parents every day.
Last week at the end of a parent-teacher conference, a parent said to me, “I just want to thank you so much for seeing X. the way you do and how you see positives behind his behaviors that can drive people crazy.” They should have been thanking you, Mrs. Minzy, and I realized that it’s about time that I do so as well. So thank you, for your role in Connor’s education and for framing your view of him through a positive lens. Thank you for helping me to be a better teacher and probably a better person.