Teacher Appreciation Day is coming up. It’s a day for current and former students everywhere to ponder all the things their teachers are doing or have done for them and to express their thanks and appreciation.
Some might not think their teachers have done anything worthy of appreciation. Those people are wrong, and I’m here to shed some light on why. Here are 30 reasons to express appreciation to your current or former teachers.
1. S/he didn’t embarrass you in front of the whole class by announcing the question you asked was stupid even though the question you asked was really friggin stupid.
2. S/he didn’t mention that one time you farted super loud in class when s/he saw you flirting with that new girl or guy in the hallway.
3. S/he didn’t tell your mom that s/he caught you talking about your masturbation habits to your buddies.
4. S/he gave you a chance to make up for that failing grade you earned when you tried to pass off a Wikipedia article as your own original work without bothering to change the formatting or remove the hyperlinks.
5. S/he didn’t mark you tardy that time you were totally late because you had used up your last remaining tardy before losing credit in the class.
6. S/he let you sit with your head down that one day after your boyfriend/girlfriend broke up with you via text message.
7. S/he let you turn in two weeks’ worth of missing work you failed to submit because you were going through your Anarchist Period.
8. S/he gave you an additional assignment no one else had the privilege of completing because you really needed to pass the class in order to graduate.
9. S/he reported her/his suspicions of your drug use to administration because s/he didn’t want to see you travel down the same self-destructive path as your sibling/parents/cousin/friends.
10. S/he stayed after school late so you could make up all those tests and quizzes you missed when you were out sick.
11. S/he never stopped caring about your progress and success even after you assaulted her/him with name-calling and rumor-mongering.
12. S/he wouldn’t let you use your tendency to play the victim and blame everyone but yourself for your problems to get out of the business of learning.
13. S/he didn’t directly tell you what a lazy P.O.S. you were when you didn’t complete a series of simple assignments you were given time to do in class even though your behavior and performance were undoubtedly the result of being a huge, lazy P.O.S. Instead, s/he encouraged you.
14. S/he happily wrote you a personal curriculum (despite what a long, arduous task that is) because the standard curriculum was not conducive to your particular disabilities and/or needs.
15. S/he asked you how you were every day because s/he could see the sadness of your soul in your eyes and wanted you to know somebody cared.
16. S/he effectively told your parents to back off when they gave you a hard time about earning an A instead of an A+.
17. S/he sacrificed time with her/his own family and friends to attend your sporting events, chaperone your school dances and activities, sponsor your extracurricular clubs, plan your lessons, and grade your work.
18. S/he purchased school supplies, funded the classroom library, and provided essentials like backpacks and coats out of her/his own pocket because s/he knew you might not have had but definitely needed these things to be successful.
19. S/he respected your intellect and ability enough to push you past your comfort zone.
20. S/he had high expectations despite your chronic complaints.
21. S/he didn’t let you have “free days” any time you annoyed her/him with requests because s/he knew “free days” did nothing to exercise your brain and prepare you for the challenges of adulthood.
22. S/he showed up nearly every day with a smile on her/his face and a cheesy joke to tickle your funny bone even when, on some days, all s/he felt like doing was crying and hiding behind her/his desk.
23. S/he fielded, negotiated, and sometimes fought against unreasonable and unfair requests and demands from you, your parents, the school board, the local government, and the national policymakers because s/he believed in what s/he was doing enough to stand up for what was right.
24. S/he went home in tears or on the verge thereof on more than one occasion because the demands of the job and the heartbreak that comes with it can sometimes be too much.
25. S/he alerted you to the toilet paper hanging off your tennis shoe, the butt crack peeping out of your pants, and the spinach between your teeth before your classmates had a chance to notice and tease you about it.
26. S/he put people in their place when they laughed at your mistake or mocked your answer in class.
27. S/he wrote your recommendation letters, signed your club membership forms, and penned notes for you to take home to your mom so you wouldn’t be grounded on the weekend of the big game.
28. S/he didn’t give up on you even after you gave up on yourself.
29. S/he made you laugh, think, cry, and reflect, all of which helped shape who you are today.
30. S/he gave a damn.