Saturday, September 8, 2012
Up by the podium stood Dr. Dole, our superintendent, and a woman that I recognized from KU Credit Union. Something was up. Dr. Dole came up to the mic and started talking about how we have great teachers at Kennedy (of course we do!) and went on to say that today one of them was getting an award. He then preceded to quote faculty members and our principal. When he got to my dear friend Ann Lounsbury's quote, I looked over at her and she winked at me. That's when I knew, this was an award for me. A huge wave of emotion came over me and I was fighting back the tears.
On Thursday at our assembly I won the Horizon Award. It's an award given to new teachers that show promise and exemplary teaching. I am incredibly honored that I was nominated and that I, out of the whole district, was chosen. When Dr. Dole said my name I came up to the podium, gave our principal a big hug and fought back the tears. I don't need an award to validate what I do, I really don't, but wow, does it feel nice. My parents and husband were also in the gym and it wasn't until Mrs. Anderson pointed it out that I realized. They made me get up to the podium and say a few words, but at the moment I really couldn't summarize what I felt, so I think I'll do that now...
Being a teacher is everything to me and it just "fills me up." I would be lying if I said it was easy or that my kids are angels. It is hard work and some days I have to muster everything I have to get through our day. They make me laugh and sometimes they make me cry, both out of frustration and out of joy. Last year was hard and I was mystified that no one told me just hard it would be! And then, just like my friend Mrs. Holland told me, it got better. The kids started to get it and I did too.
What I love most about teaching is seeing kids come to life. I love reading them a story and watching their faces fill with anticipation as to what will come next. I love listening to them congratulate a friend or help one of their classmates out who really needs it. I aspire to teach them, but I also aspire to show them that they are worth it, no matter where they come from or what they look like, that they are worth something. I strive to teach them that they can do what they thought they could not. I hope that they begin school with dreams of becoming something great and that they will continue through school thinking just that. No, my class is not full of angels, but in the end, if I have done my job, they are all learners and dreamers.
My deepest and most sincerest thank you to all who have supported me. And thanks to all my teachers over the years.