The Penny Promise
It was my first year teaching. It was the last day of school.
A colleague of mine saw me taping pennies to letters. (I had this grand idea - an idea that I was beginning to think might be more futile and crazy than grand; that these pennies could somehow help me stay in touch with every student I had taught.)
My fellow teacher asked why the pennies and I told her, “Basically, to encourage the children to keep doing well in school. That - and as a way for us to stay in touch.“
I handed her one of the letters I had written and intended to give to each child. She read it thoughtfully, then looked up at me and said, “Mr. Talley, do you really expect children to get excited over a penny? It’s such a little thing! They’ll all lose their pennies eventually. Most won’t know where they are in a day or two. And as far as keeping up with your students - you’ll never hear from most all of these children ever again. Believe it or not, you will even completely forget some of them over time.”
I was crushed. This lady had taught for nearly forty years, so I assumed she spoke the truth.
Yet something inside me told me she was wrong. So I began to use her words as fuel for my lifelong crusade to stay in touch with all my students.
Keep reading with a 7-day free trial