Momma Hunt
So last night I had a former student over for dinner. Although some people, even fellow teachers, would think it weird to have a student over to their house. They would think that it crosses some fundamental line between your work life and private life. I have never been one of those teachers that feels I need to keep those two things completely separate but I would have never thought of having a student to my house to eat because it would be weird. Last night's dinner wasn't weird it was wonderful.

This student, who I have grown close to over the past two years, has become more than a student he has become like family. Now you might be asking why or how does that happen. In truth I don't really know how it happens, it just did. This student on a good day would drive most teachers a little crazy. He was a funny kid who was too smart for low level classes but lazy enough to not be in a higher level. He couldn't sit still in his seat and was almost always off task. Yet, over the course of the two years he became one of my favorite students. I found out months ago that a lot of his behavioral issues had to deal with what was going on at home, his mom was dying and had been diagnosed with terminal cancer when he was in middle school. As I got to know him more, I realized the reason I liked him so much he was because he was like me. He got up every day, slapped on a happy face, and pretended that his life wasn't a hot mess at home. As I was getting ready to leave to have my daughter he kept telling me how much he was going to miss me not being at school everyday (even when the semester changed and he was no longer my student he came to see me several times a week to check in). I gave him my cell phone number in case of emergency and sadly he needed the number sooner then expected. A week and half before my baby was due his mother died. I was blessed to be one of three teachers he asked to a private graduation ceremony that the school held for him and his mother in her hospice care facility, I went to her funeral two days before my baby was born, and one of few people to visit me in the hospital after my baby was born was this student, I even got to see him graduate "for real". We send each other text messages about once a week to check in on each other and last night he came to dinner. Somehow along that way I became more than a teacher to him and he was something more than just "a student"
4 Responses
  1. Kitten Says:

    Your blog post really touched me. As a teacher myself, it's especially important to be aware of the power of the student-teacher relationship. In many situations, we're the only ones that the kids have to count on. School is the only stable place to go. I know that your student's mother appreciated everything you were able to do for him.

  2. Beth Says:

    As a school counselor, I am always talking to teachers about how their relationships with their students are sometimes the only thing that keeps those students motivated enough to keep going. Your story was very moving. I'm sure you are a wonderful teacher, and your students are lucky to have you. Keep up the good work!

  3. Sarah Says:

    This is great. I'm still close to some of my former teachers, and I'm so glad they were always there for me when I needed them, especially in the days around the time that my dad died. Good for you for having that kind of relationship with your students, too!

  4. This is such a teaching story, tears in my eyes! I love the relationships we can develop as teachers and I certainly have had students over to my house. I used to organize a party every June for my graduating French seniors (they had been with me for 4 years) they eliminate the French program I will miss this. It was also interesting because I invited the current graduates and previous graduates and they were able to give practical college experience while I whipped up some crepes!

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