Letters to Elementary School Teachers by ryandenney

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									                       Thank-You Notes to Elementary School Teachers
                                     Charles Fuhrken


To Mrs. Box,                                     To Mrs. Torres,
First grade teacher,                             Third grade teacher,
For days I stared                                Each day after
out the window at                                lunch we sprawled out
the playground                                   on the story rug and clung to
when I was supposed to                           tales about a chocolate
read about a boy                                 factory, a red fern, and a giant
named Dick and a girl                            peach.
named Jane. Instead of corner                    Spinning words like
time, you gave me                                Charlotte in her web, you
a pencil and a Big                               were Radiant,
Chief tablet and let me invent                   Humble,
my own stories—and I forgot all about            Terrific, and Some
recess.                                          Teacher.

To Mrs. Meischen,                                To Teachers Everywhere,
Second grade teacher,                            We students remember
I still have                                     ant aquariums and Weekly
the first place                                  Reader, cursive
prize I won in your spelling                     handwriting and talent shows, sock
bee—a ribbon of                                  puppets and science
blue construction paper cut out and              fairs, show and
perfectly                                        tell and field trips, times
laminated. Down to me and                        tables and i before e. Moments glued
Gloria, the word was                             together in our minds like
ap-pre-ci-ate,                                   the collages you treasured from us,
verb,                                            displayed in the hallway, and praised
“to be grateful for”—and I still                 with bright eyes and a contagious
am.                                              smile.




Charles Fuhrken works in assessment and is the author of What Every Elementary Teacher
Needs to Know About Reading Tests (Stenhouse, 2009). He earned his Ph.D. in curriculum and
instruction from the University of Texas at Austin.

								
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