Dear seniors of Sluiter Nation,
Or should I say, “Ok guys, a few things…” since that is how I start every single class, every single day for the past nine months with you.
Tomorrow (Friday) is your last day. I’ve been back and forth and kept awake at night about these last couple days with you. I want our year to end just right. I want to say just the right things to you. But here is the deal, I can’t.
I can’t do it.
For one, if I say the things in my heart out loud, it will come out all wrong. I will make one of my faces because I will feel uncomfortable and you will all laugh. Or, and this is my bigger fear, I will cry.
Plus I would have to say all this four times since there are four classes of you guys.
So I am going to write my parting words for you (and the rest of the interwebs, I guess) to read. So here it goes…
I’m going to miss you weirdos.
I am not exaggerating when I say this has been my best year of teaching in at LEAST five years. I have never not liked my job, but this year I loved it again. That was because of you guys.
I can’t remember the last time I was so exhausted at the end of the school year…but in a good way. In a way that felt like I was tired because I had put forth so much of my heart and soul into good things. You guys are those good things.
And I will miss you.
First hour, I will miss the way we eased into our mornings together. School started at 7:30am, but we were never a full class until at BEST 7:45 (Ok, I won’t miss that, ya slackers!), but I do appreciate that you guys could hang out on those days of terrible weather that made me late. I never had to worry about you guys acting like fools while I wasn’t there. I could concentrate on getting to school safely.
I’ll miss the way that even though you seemed sort of asleep, you were consistently the class who heard all the directions–even if you were always the last to get every single assignment in from each person.
I’ll miss the guys, and I’ll miss all the ladies who tolerated the guys and joined me in the eye-rolling about the guys.
Petey and Tyler, may you continue to always find a funny on a Friday even after you’re not in room 47 anymore. And Logan, I’m sorry I almost got you fired for getting you addicted to hashtags. #sorrynotsorry
Fourth hour, I will miss your great greetings. Each of you were so good at saying, “Hey Mrs. Sluiter!” or “Good morning, Mrs. Sluiter!” You all came in so happy each day.
And you kicked ACE at English. You did. You amazed me on the daily. This class consistently blew me out of the water with the level of awesome that you achieved on stuff I assigned.
Whether we were talking about Beowulf, Macbeth, or you were talking in your book clubs, the stuff you came up with was awesome and so uniquely YOU.
Oh and Cody? #merica
Sixth hour, Thank you for being my after lunch class. You guys won as the class who, hands down, had the best class discussions. You also laughed the hardest at my stories and jokes, which means you win.
I will miss your ridiculous randomness, your tireless effort to get out of work, and how shocked you all were when you realized that you could do amazing things (like write really well and read a whole book and love it).
I will miss how great you could make me feel even though it was the afternoon and I wanted to be tired.
I do give side-eye to all of you who brought in delicious-looking snacks and never shared with me. #justsayin’
Although thanks for not leaving a mess because messes = mice and bugs. Mice and bugs = GROSS.
Seventh hour, Thanks for being, by far, the chillest last hour of the day I have ever had in thirteen years in the teaching business. I know anyone who walked in my room did a double take because they couldn’t believe you all were working so hard and so quietly. I like to say I am such a BA teacher that I made you that way, but you are all just that cool.
Instead of being wild banshees at the end of the day, you guys knew to get your shiz done and get on with it. I like that.
Well, except you, Nick. You were totally out of control. #sarcasmfont
All of you…
I know you’re giggling as I get sappy here because you know there were times you did nothing in my class. I know that too. I mean, it wasn’t perfect.
There were things that I could have done differently to make you all more successful, and there were definitely things some of you could have done differently to have a better ending to this school year.
But what it came down to was this: you guys made me want to be a better teacher each day. You made me want to try new things that would help more students. And you LET me try those things–like the book clubs–without too much complaint, and even with a whole lot of encouragement.
You were honest with me.
You were fun.
You were serious.
You were ridiculous.
You were totally weird.
You were random.
You were you.
And I am going to miss each and every one of you (yes, even you).
I want you to know I am proud of each of you. EACH OF YOU has something from my class to be proud of. I have been praying for each of you this entire school year.
I am so happy to have been a tiny part of each of your lives.
“You’re off to Great Places!
Today is your day!
Your mountain is waiting,
So… get on your way!”
(Oh, The Places You’ll Go by Dr. Seuss)