I asked my students this week why it is important to express our gratitude. As usual, they had a lot to say. I think Kate summed it up quite nicely on her blog:
It is important to show gratitude because everything deserves gratitude. Even the little things, like a bluebird landing on your windowsill, deserve thanks. What you take for granted are blessings (and even miracles) for others.
We do take much for granted in our lives, and I think that has a lot to do with how busy our lives have become. We just don’t have the time to stop and notice the bluebird on our windowsill, or the brilliant red leaves outside our classroom window, and say a prayer of thanks.
How can we remind ourselves of the importance of noticing each and every gift, each and every treasure, that are given to us each day? Perhaps an even better question is: Why do we need reminding?
I know that each of my students is a gift for me to treasure. I don’t often need reminders of this fact (mostly because they remind me of it every day). But today my students gave me a reminder of why I’m so thankful to work with such amazing young people. They wrote me a poem of Thanksgiving! And you know me…I just had to share it. It really touched me that they would spend so much time writing something for me (especially something that’s not being graded!). I Hope they know how very grateful I am that I get to spend my days with them.
In place of food this year
we all thought we’d give
blessings of another kind,
blessings made not from hand,
but instead made from the mind.
So your feast, like any other,
of course shall include
turkey, pudding, stuffing, pie,
and a whole lot more food.
But instead of normal turkey,
or normal pudding or pie,
we have a few more ideas
that we would like to try.
T is generally used for Turkey,
dark or light the same,
but instead this year T is for
the thoughtfulness you express each day.
S is for Stuffing,
oh that delicious stuff,
but we thought S meant a little more for us.
Like what a Super teacher you are
or how you always Smile.
Or even how you are Sarcastic
every once in a while.
G is for the Gravy,
the flavor on the table.
The gratitude we feel for you
is what makes us able
to see in new light
all the things around, in the sky,
and on the ground.
P is for Pumpkin Pie to polish off each meal
adding but a little cream
to sweeten up the bites,
but to us it means you Push us,
to try and reach new heights.
H is for Ham,
the tender delicious meat,
but H for us is the Happiness
you share with us each day
that we all think of as a treat.
C is for Cranberry Sauce,
the topping on the food.
You teach us to be Compassionate,
and try not to brood. [vocab word!]
B is for the hot rolls of Bread
set out on the table,
and B is also for Believing
we are always capable
of doing anything we try,
and if we want to even touching the sky.
M is for the Many Mashed Potatoes,
soft and warm and inviting,
just as you Magnificently make
our many classes with you exciting.
Y is for Yams,
the other type of potato,
but Y is also for You being yourself,
and not yelling when we are
not quite mellow.
C is lastly for CHOCOLATE,
and I feel there is nothing more to say
except that your Caring
gets us through each day.
It does not spell anything out
other than the fact
it spells out how we feel about you
which is that for a fact
You are the best
teacher in the world
and you of all people
to take a break
and take a rest
and just know that you are the best.
So we just all want to tell you it’s true
when we say
from us to you.
You’re all a bunch of goofballs! And I wouldn’t have it any other way!! Happy Thanksgiving!
Oh, one more thing…”once in a while”??? Seriously? Do you know me AT ALL??? 😛