About This Book

This is a great gift for new and experienced teachers, providing them a morale boost and the knowledge they are appreciated. The teaching industry has embraced this book, and more than half the stories are from "celebrity" teachers, including all of the 2009 State Teachers of the Year and the 2009 National Teacher of the Year. There is a lot of buzz about this book in the teaching industry and those teachers who don't receive it as a gift are sure to buy it for themselves, to read these 101 true stories by great teachers and appreciative students, with lots of laughs, poignant moments, and some tears too.

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Refresher course: 5 reasons teachers rule!

Inspired by Chicken Soup for the Soul: Teacher Tales

By Jack Canfield, Mark Victor Hansen and Amy Newmark. Foreword by Tony Mullen.

A teacher's commitment does not begin and end with the first and last bell of the day. It is a lifelong commitment to the improvement of others. Teachers motivate students to be their best, but also pick up the pieces when students need a little extra support. Inspired by Chicken Soup for the Soul: Teacher Tales ̧ the following is a refresher on what it means to be a teacher, but more importantly, it reminds teachers that they are important and make a difference in their students’ lives.

1. In a teacher’s presence, everyone shines. Every student is a new subject a teacher must study and learn. Not only do they have to find out what makes their students tick, teachers also have to know the areas where students need help. As a fourth grader Gloria Noyes was going through a tough time at home. She was at a critical turning point in her life, something her teacher Mrs. Dutton realized. "This incredible woman recognized my soul needed nurturing as much as my intellect, if not more, and she embraced the challenge," shares Gloria in her story. "In her presence we all shined, and if you ask me, that is what teaching is all about." Gloria went on to become Maine’s 2009 State Teacher of the Year and remains grateful to Mrs. Dutton.

2. The alternatives a teacher presents can change a life’s direction. Every day, Margaret Williams, Missouri’s 2009 State Teacher of the Year, watched her student Ricky stare out the window at the band. Mrs. Williams told him if he liked the band that much that he needed to go tell the director. A few years later, Ricky, in a local band at the time, thanked Mrs. Williams for pushing him to try out for band. Mrs. Williams learned a lesson that day: "I could have yelled at him for looking out the window, or moved him away from the window. Instead, I gave him an alternative that changed his whole life. I realized that I was teaching children with every word I said, every action I took, and with every decision I made."

3. Teachers find ways to count their blessings. 2009 Louisiana State Teacher of the Year Deborah Tonguis’ school took in Hurricane Katrina evacuees, including Ashley. The two of them formed a special bond, especially over their love for the color pink. Only months after relocating to the community, Ashley lost her life in a car accident. What Katrina hadn’t crushed in Mrs. Tonguis’ spirit this news did, although she did find one surprise blessing. "Katrina blew through southern Louisiana and took many things away but it also brought people like Ashley into our lives, someone we never would have known if it hadn’t been for that hurricane," says Mrs. Tonguis about the experience.

4. Teachers help save lives. James Phillips, 2009 State Teacher of the Year for the Commonwealth of Northern Mariana Islands, started Monday morning to shouts of, "Tell him what happened at the beach yesterday." Caught off guard, he did not know what to expect. A student had watched a three-year-old left unattended be swept under by a wave. She remembered the CPR class she took with Mr. Phillips and was able to provide rescue breathing and chest compressions until paramedics arrived. "As teachers," Mr. Phillips says, "we know that through our energy and effort children learn. In this way we know we have the power to change lives. I’d add that once in a while we have the power to save a life."

5. Teachers are still students themselves. Teachers have a lesson plan every day, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t ready for the unexpected lessons. "I walk through the door of my classroom ready to teach," shares Pennsylvania State Teacher of the Year Rebecca Snyder, "but also eager to learn from the young people who are excited to teach me about them. We teachers are masters of prepared lessons, but should always appreciate that the unexpected lessons, both simple and profound, effect the most powerful difference, for they make students of us all."

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