Mothers and Teachers and Teachers and Mothers

To have mother’s day and teacher appreciation week in the same week leads me to thinking of all the people that most influence all of of our lives.  Whether it be our mother or father, our best friends mother, our fifth grade homeroom teacher, third grade math or after school teacher or even our preschool teacher who started us off on the right track.  What do all of these people have in common that make them stand out when we look back on our lives to those who changed who we are or our life’s direction?

That, essentially, is what a great teacher does.  They influence the lives of children to a degree that it makes that child grow, learn or change under their care.  And, of course a mother, is a teacher for the life of the child.

The best teachers care, smile, laugh and share parts of themselves with each of their students.  The best teachers look after the ones that need them the most and after the rest when they are in need.

The best teachers are not our friends, and sometimes force us to work the hardest when we think their is no more work left inside of us.

The best teachers open our eyes to new ideas and make us know we are  the most brilliant yet still have so much to learn.

The best teachers listen to what we have to say, and cut us off when we say too much.

The best teachers can turn a bad day into a learning experience and good day into a fond memory.

I’d like to take this opportunity to thank the mothers and the teachers that touch my life every day.

The mothers that I chat with when they pick up their child at preschool or after school and laugh at their child’s antics.  The mothers that email me looking for the best place for their child to learn and make new friends and stay safe when they can’t shield them themselves.  I want to thank you for trusting me to take your child into my heart and make them part of my own.  And thank you for letting me watch you kiss them good bye and hug them hello and remind me to be a good mother to my own two boys.

Thank you to my own mother who taught me to think for myself and to my father who taught me to think.  Thank you to my Aunt who is still teaching me how to read.  Thank you to my teachers in small town PA who took me outside that small town and made sure I knew there was more out there.

I thank the teachers I work with, my Kids On 12th team, my partners.  For their dedication to my dream of this special place for kids to grow.

Thank you to the teachers who have touched my children.  Some of the best teachers anywhere can be found right here in Philadelphia public and charter schools.  I know this because my kids are growing up great, even when they fight so hard against me.  And because the kids I see every day come happily from McCall, ICS and Greenfield.  Thank you to the kindergarten and first grade teachers that know these are such tough years, to the second and third grade  teachers that shape little kids into big kids.  Thank you to the fourth and fifth grade teachers who transform those children into young adults and the sixth grade teachers that start us on the road to adolescence.  That’s as far as I’ve gone so far, but I have no doubt in my mind that there are so many more amazing teachers we have yet to meet.

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