In my lifetime I have had over 22 years of formal education and have been mentored and a student of several other learning opportunities. One of the companies I worked for put me through a leadership training course and the top item I took away from the training was regardless of the situation, you can always maintain or enhance a person’s self-esteem. The more I implement this philosophy, the happier I am. My 10th grade Biology teacher was positively amazing. He made the ordinary spectacular and the spectacular phenomenal. I loved to attend his class because I left learning about photosynthesis and chlorophyl and other natural properties that we watch evolve every day. Mr. Johnson was a force—a force for innovative thought. He inspired me to think about life and science differently and to understand the systematic approach of life and genetic code.
Two years later while I was a senior at Boise High School, I had another revolutionary time in a course called the American Political Economic System. We learned about politics, going back to the foundations of our country, and how our government and economy was founded. My teacher was fantastic. Mrs. Chastain made it clear she had high expectations of her students. She was preparing us with critical thinking, problem solving, and more as we graduate from high school. New vistas and understanding were transferred to her students because of her zest and passion for life. She treated everyone with deep respect and called everyone Mr. or Ms., and always in a welcoming, professional manner.
This year I had a reflective moment when a teacher and coach of mine from East Junior High passed away. Mr. Ackley helped me to understand the fundamentals of basketball and how to understand the components of a high performing team. He was a coach that demanded your best and the synergies when you play as a team. I will be in debt to him for he gave me life skills and helped me build confidence in myself.
Each of us have been influenced by a teacher. We all have different experiences and learning moments. We all seek for better ways to solve challenges. We look for ways to structure or organize, but we all do things differently. When I remember to implement an abundant, win/win philosophy in my life, that has been taught to me by many different teachers and people, I live a much richer life.
So as we celebrate National Teacher Appreciation Week, let us look back and thank the teachers who have given of themselves to help us become better people, better families, better citizens, a better nation, and a better world. An item that one teacher taught me—and she was an educator but also was my Mom—to always believe in yourself. A masterful gift.
Please thank those teachers who have influenced your life, as gratitude is an amazing gift.