By Nate | August 24, 2011
Every teacher I know feels a little bit of dread in the pit of their stomach when August rolls around. There’s no doubt that most teachers love their jobs and love making a difference in students’ lives, but the effort to gear up for the new school year requires an abrupt shifting of gears out of “summer mode” and into “teaching mode”. It’s very similar to the anxiety some kids feel returning to school…multiplied by a million.
If you have a special teacher in your life, you know that right about now they could use a little extra support. Luckily, there’s a little furry teacher who’s there to help: Teacher Bear. She’s ready to kick it “old school” in a plaid dress with a cute white collar that has an “A B C” and fruit design. Teacher Bear also comes with a little pencil button by her collar, so there’s no room for doubt that she’s here to help YOU get the best education you can and live up to your potential. Her collar can also be personalized with a name, so if she wanders to another classroom, everyone will know which home room she really belongs to!
We have lots of other Bears going back to school, too! All of our sports Bears are practicing for the fall and winter season, and they make great sports gifts, too. Meanwhile, Artist Bear is ready to teach visual arts, Chef Bear just got all his supplies for human sciences (a/k/a home economics, which is sometimes also team-taught by Dentist Bear and Doctor Bear), and Always on the Go Bear is racing across her college campus for the first class of the semester. This is one group of Teddy Bears that love their education!
This makes me think back to the teachers who have made such a difference in my life. There have been so many, but my mind always goes to Mr. Schiff, my 7th grade Social Studies teacher in I.S. 293, Brooklyn. I remember that Mr. Schiff used to start out the day by taking out the New York Times, selecting the top three stories from the front page, and writing their first paragraphs on the chalkboard (this was before computers in classrooms). Then, the rest of us were expected to transcribe those same paragraphs into our own (paper) notebooks, and we would discuss them as well.
Was that extra step of having us copy those paragraphs just unnecessary drudgery? Maybe, but you know what? That information really stuck with me for years. Mr. Schiff seemed a little old-fashioned, even formal, but he always held us up to high standards and expected us to meet them. I hope that I did.
How about you? Was there a special teacher who made a difference in your life?
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