M. Colleen Cruz

Writer, Educator, Consultant

Day Four- Teacher Appreciation Stories

May 7, 2015

Tags: Promised, love, our kids

Thank you for your positive responses to the blog this week! I especially loved your lists of things purchased in the name of kids! Today's post is a little bit of a departure...

When I was a young teacher, I was told a story about a teacher in my building that affected me profoundly.

The story, which I later verified as true, went like this:

Ms. E was a beloved primary grade teacher. The energetic, smart teacher who LOVES her kids, that we all wish for our own kids. One year she had a student in her class, a little guy, whom she adored. However, the boy's home life was less than one would hope for any child, let alone one as young as he was.

But Ms. E loved him up, as she was inclined to do. His year with her went well. And on his last day in her class she said, "If you ever need me, call me. I will help you however I can."

She watched him go up the grades in her school, always keeping in touch. Always making sure he knew she still cared. He eventually graduated. She still kept in touch with him, but less so. This was in the time before cell phones and email. Then, he sort of disappeared from contact for awhile.

Fast forward a bit, and Ms. E received a phone call from the boy, " You said if I was ever in trouble, I should call you. I was kicked out of my house. I'm calling from a pay phone. I have nowhere to go."

Ms. E got the address and went to pick up the boy, now a teenager. She brought home home. She tried to help him mend his troubles at home, but no luck.

So Ms. E adopted him. And they became a family.

I am so grateful that teachers like Ms. E exist. Teachers who not only rescue children, but all those who love children profoundly. I'm also profoundly grateful to all teachers who follow through on their promises to children. The ones who give children a soft place to land. The ones who inspire others to act in the best interests of others. We all do things for our students, big and small. But I think we often only think of how those acts affect the kids.

I want to say, that when teachers act, others are also inspired.

If you have any inspirational stories to share - yours or another's, please leave them in the comments below.

Selected Works

A book that addresses some of the most common and challenging struggles a teacher of writing might face - and offers solutions
Professional Literature
A practical resource for 3rd grade teachers looking to teach writing workshop
A practical resource for 4th grade teachers looking to teach writing workshop.
A practical book and quick read from Heinemann's Help Desk Imprint
Co-written with Lucy Calkins, this book is a part of the Units of Study First Hand Series from Heinemann.
Designed for teachers, this book discusses the ins and outs of teaching students to cultivate independent writing lives.
Young Adult Novel
A finalist for the Tomas Rivera Mexican American Children's Book Award, this book follows the story of Cesi as she embarks on a journey to Mexico in order to learn more about her family, and herself.