It was one of the last days of school for the 8th graders and I asked them to write letters to the upcoming students who would be in 8th grade next year. I wanted them to be thoughtful, take their time and write advice as to how to be successful in my class. This would give me some insight on what the kids thought it required to do well in my class and hopefully, I’d get to read some of their memories about what activities or lessons were meaningful and fun to them throughout the year.
After a few minutes, Romante turned in his paper. As he handed it to me, I noticed there was only one line of writing written down. “Great effort,” I thought to myself sarcastically. Something that really irritates me from day to day is when students don’t try. Of course, they’re not going to all be over achievers every day, but I just really want them to try their best. Couldn’t he have written more?!
I took a deep breath to not show my frustration with Romante and looked at his letter before saying anything. That’s when I realized that his one line really summed up what he believed it took to be successful in my class:
“Be respectful and pay attention cuz Ms. D don’t play.”
Turns out, his was my favorite.