Friday, June 27, 2014

Who's Your Cheerleader?

I have to apologize, mostly to myself, for the lack of posts.  4th term was a bit of a bear with 4 preps (2 I haven't had in years).  Now that summer has set in I've had some time to relax, recenter, and refocus.

This post is more of a question that I'm posing to you, the reader.  It's a way for me to wrap my brain around the thoughts I have regarding "self promotion". So here's the question:

Is it appropriate for a teacher to actively "self promote" themselves?

Here's the reasoning behind the question.  I received an email from a student last week thanking me for a letter of recommendation I wrote on his behalf.  At the end of the letter he added the following:
"I also wanted to thank you for all the help that you have given me throughout my high school career. I think that you’re an amazing teacher who is deeply committed to the overall education of your students. I have greatly enjoyed your physics and astronomy and meteorology classes. The knowledge I have gained through your classes allows me to see the world in a different light. I am now much more aware of the physical processes which govern the world around me. It has truly been a pleasure to have you as a teacher."
Obviously this made my day.  I got a lump in my throat and tears started forming.  This is why we do it.  To know we've helped make a difference in a student's life.  This is what keeps us going.

We don't get these types of thanks from students very often. We may get them from parents from time to time and sometimes these are shared with our administrators.

So I pose the question again...

Is it appropriate for a teacher to actively "self promote" themselves?

Would it be appropriate for me to share this email with my administrator? I'm so proud of receiving this email yet I struggle with being seen as boasting or bragging if I do share it.  At no other time in my teaching career have I felt as though I need to be a cheerleader for public education, let alone myself.

What do you think?  Please share any thoughts below.  I value and appreciate your comments.




  1. I love this note! How thrilling to work with with students not only capable of such gratitude, but able to articulate all so nicely...

  2. If only they were ALL like that! Just joking. All my students bring something special to our learning environment. It's such a great feeling when they express it to you without any prompting.