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Teacher Appreciation Day 2022

It's Teacher Appreciation Week (more specifically, Teacher Appreciation DAY!)-- I wanted to take a moment to recognize our school's amazing teachers for the hard work, time, energy, and LOVE that they bring to this school each and every day. It's no secret that teaching is a profession of passion and service-- without a love of children, of education, and of enriching the lives of the students we're blessed with each day, no teacher would ever choose to continue pushing through the stresses, complications, and challenges that can arise. Add a pandemic on top of all that, and you can see why it's extra important this year to recognize the incredible job our teachers are doing and have been doing every single day!

When I started teaching in the 3's classroom several years ago, there was a sign hanging in my classroom that said "Little Friends 3's is a SAFE and HAPPY place!" It was old and weathered, so my co-teacher and I decided to re-make the sign, but we felt that the sentiment should remain the same. Every child coming through our school's doors comes from a different background, and we don't always get to know the details of the things they might face when they aren't at school. That makes it extra important for all of us teachers to ensure that while our students are in our care, they all feel safe, happy, and loved, and that is a big part of what our Little Friends teachers put out into the classroom every day.

Additionally, all of our teachers come from different backgrounds, and all of us have personal lives that can be stressful, complicated, and challenging at times. That makes it JUST as important to send the message to the teachers that Little Friends Preschool is a SAFE and HAPPY place! No longer being in a classroom every day has allowed me to pivot much of my focus to our amazing staff-- for the few hours each day that they are here, it's my goal to make sure that I'm doing everything that I can to make their job just a little easier, hopefully a little happier, and to send the message that what they are doing is of utmost importance.

Every teacher in this building pours their whole heart into each student, every single day-- every student is just as loved on their "bad" days as they are on their best days, and every teacher strives to give each child everything they need to be successful. That can look different from child to child, because each situation is unique, but the intention and love remains consistent. When a student is having difficulties, we use every resource we have-- from specialized intervention right down to Pinterest suggestions-- to find tools and strategies that can help that child overcome their challenges, or at least help them to find a better path forward.

So although our classes may only be 2 1/2 hours long, our teachers stay "plugged in" much longer than that; they always go above and beyond to give each student the best experience possible, and that often (almost always) means they're dipping into their personal time and resources. Not because they HAVE to, not because that is the expectation that has been placed on them, but because they genuinely love and care abou

their students and the experience that they are providing in order to set the stage for the educational years to come. That level of dedication and love comes from within-- we can't train people to care and love the way that our teachers do. There's no degree or certificate or seminar that can instill that in a person-- they just have it in the make-up of who they are as people. And THAT is what makes our teachers phenomenal, and our program here at Little Friends so special.

Take a moment and show your appreciation to your teachers-- knowing how loved and valued they are is so important, and having a parent acknowledge the positive impact they're having on a child means the world. You don't have to be fancy-- a heartfelt text message/email/note can go a long way, and the impact of your appreciation will linger even after your child moves on from their class.


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