"To Teach is to Touch a Life Forever" is a quote teachers hear often. I always wondered how true this quote was. Kids would come back after they left the school, say hello and tell me how they were doing, but I always wondered if I had really touched their lives in some way. Did I make a difference? Did I reach every student? Did they know that extra nudge or push was a way of making them a better person or student?
A week ago I had an experience that told me that what I do, does matter!
Let me relay the story...
Back in 1998/99 two students, Kaushal and Shivani, met in sixth grade here at Goodrich School. They were good friends. After junior high, life took them in different directions and they fell out of touch with one another. Eventually both of them ended up back here in the area and back in touch. After a few years of dating, Kaushal wanted to propose to Shivani, and wanted to do it in a very special way. Goodrich School and the 6th grade teachers held a very special place in both of their hearts. So on Labor Day, with help from friends, family, and their 6th grade teachers, Kaushal planned an elaborate proposal at Goodrich School in the same 6th grade classroom where they met. The best part...they wanted their 6th grade teachers, Sharon Green and myself, to be a part of it. What an honor!! The proposal was beautiful, and the tears flowed...not only by Shivani, but also her two 6th grade teachers.
This one moment in my teaching career has reminded me that I have the opportunity to touch lives in so many different ways. To motivate. To inspire. To encourage. To push. To impact. To make a difference.
In the end, I found out teachers do make a difference, even if it is in the smallest of ways, and I am very happy to be a part of that.