5.05.2017

PPBF: A Letter To My Teacher

Today I'm grateful because my day started with this beauty from one of our new students that has grabbed my heart. I love the creative way she spelled my name almost as much as her heartfelt sentiments.


One year, I got these books with letters from students
which I keep in my special Smile File. 
Letters from our students are such a blessing,
a treasured gift to be sure.

Click the image for more Teacher Appreciation Week ideas.

Tonight I found this touching PPBF gem on a date night at Barnes & Noble, the perfect complement to these student letters and the perfect way to top off 
Teacher Appreciation Week 2017.


Title: A Letter To My Teacher
Author: Deborah Hopkinson
Pictures by: Nancy Carpenter
Publisher: Schwartz & Wade
Date: April 4, 2017
Suitable for ages: 4-8 (and up!)
Genre: Realistic fiction
Themes: understanding, inspiration, gratitude
Brief synopsis: A girl, now an adult, shares her childhood reflections through a thank-you letter to her second-grade teacher.
Opening pages: Dear Teacher, Whenever I had something to tell you, I tugged on your shirt and whispered in your ear. This time I'm writing a letter.

Resources: 
Read review on Book Page {here}.
Check out the Publishers Weekly review {here}.
Enjoy the Random House review {here}.

Why I like this book: This book is a brilliant way to honor and celebrate teachers present and past while incorporating the lost art of letter writing. Through the technique of sharing vulnerable reflections in an honest, poignant way, this text tugs at heartstrings because we all have that one teacher that made an impact. I love the way that the little girl talks so openly about her experiences in school, the good times along with the bad, punctuating the difference that her teacher made to a little someone who wasn't always very keen on school. 

And as I was reading it, I couldn't help but wish I'd have written it.

Use this treasure as a perfect springboard for a letter-writing activity for your staff. Read it aloud at a faculty meeting and provide note cards so that your teachers could write to a teacher, mentor, or coach who inspired them when they were students in their formative years. Maybe even the one who sparked their passion for learning and growth and encouraged them to become teachers.  


When we did this (thanks for the idea, Jay Billy!), a few of the teachers shared how much they enjoy getting updates from former students, how it fuels their emotional reserves, how it keeps them going and makes them want to be better, a win-win for sure.

Check out this book; I think you'll especially love the full-circle ending. 

Then head on over to Susanna Leonard Hill's blog next to see the other fabulous PPBF picks waiting for you there. 

Happy reading.






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