So it may seem strange that a retired teacher is talking “back to school” stuff. However, I’ve learned that you can take the teacher out of teaching but you can’t take teaching out of the teacher. While I don’t teach as a profession anymore, many of my friends still do. Although I don’t have students anymore, the students I’ve had in the past still mean the world to me. Because of that, back to school still holds a special place in my heart and mind.
My last two schools both started back to school yesterday. I loved seeing the teachers, parents, and students talk about “the first day” on Facebook or Instagram! As always, you see the excitement mixed with some nerves. Anticipation mixed with a bit of dread. All normal…all expected.
If you don’t know it, I’m in Kentucky. We have some major education related issues going on in our state, as do many states throughout the country. When teachers are verbally attacked by supposed leaders, it makes it difficult to stay focused and motivated. But one thing I know for sure is that teachers teach because of the students. Teachers sacrifice much to meet the needs of their school babies no matter their age or stage.
As many headed back to school yesterday, I thought about how important it is to support and encourage school workers…teachers, assistants, administration, everyone! Just a year out from retiring, of course, my mind is specifically on the teachers.
So how can I…how can you…encourage the teachers in your area? Here are a few ideas. I’m sure you could think of many more. If you do, put them in the comments!
- Know a teacher personally? Simply send a text, make a call, send a card to let them know how awesome they are and you are praying for them as they start the year.
- Teachers spend a large sum of money out of their personal funds to provide students with many tools and opportunities. Want to bless a teacher and a class? Drop off a Walmart, Target, Amazon (you get the idea) gift card or two at your neighborhood school to be used as a prize giveaway for teachers!
- Many teachers work to give every student in their class a free book each month. Offer to sponsor a child or two! It typically is just $1 per month per student!
- Coffee! Coffee is always good! Take a cup of coffee to your teacher friends now and then! Or send the school some coffee shop gift-cards.
- Volunteer to help make learning materials at home. You can cut, color, fold. There is never enough time in the day for a teacher to get it all accomplished.
- Buy a supply of GOOD QUALITY pencils, sharpen them, and drop off to a teacher or school. Want to take this up a notch? Write encouraging notes on the pencils with a permanent marker. (You rock! You are a math whiz! Have an awesome day!)
- Get together with a few others and make pencil or pen bouquets for the teachers at your local school.
- Brag on your child’s teacher! Talk about the good things going on in your school and in your children’s classrooms! Be sure to tell the teacher, too!
- Send EXTRA supplies! If the teacher asks for one box of crayons, send an extra for someone else! Feeling extra generous, send a full set of extra supplies.
- Ask a teacher how you can pray for him/her. Then, pray for them daily!
This certainly isn’t an exhaustive list. What else can you think of that would be an encouragement to your local school? I’d love to hear your ideas!
As kids and teachers all over the country head back to school, let’s all help to make it a good start…a fresh start…for them all!