Monday, January 12, 2009

Inspiration in the Subway

"What do you call a room full of explorers, inventors and authors? Your first period class."

We saw these ads on our subway ride from the American Museum of Natural History back to Rockefeller Center. Aren't they great?! They're advertising the New York Teaching Fellows Program, a program that places professionals from other fields in teaching jobs, mainly for ideological reasons. 

"Ser bilingüe abre la puerta a un mejor futuro... You can give students the key."

"Being bilingual opens the door to a better future..." I loved this ad, too! It's what I do!

"You remember your first grade teacher's name. Who will remember yours?"

THIS ad really got to me. Two years ago my mom and I visited my first grade teacher who is also an artist. She taught me, all those years ago, about outlining my drawings in black... A skill I still use when creating the murals in my daughters' room. I've never forgotten her, just as I haven't forgotten so many of the other men and women who have helped me to become who I am, what I am...

One of my most prized possessions is a gift that my eighth graders gave me as a baby gift when I had Katya. No, not a picture frame or hand-knit sweater... A collection of letters they wrote to Katya -- IN FRENCH, since they were sure I'd have taught it to her by the age of fourteen. The main message? How lucky she is to have me as a mom. How she may think I'm a complete dork at times, but that my heart is in the right place and that I care. That I don't assign busy work -- that I think carefully before I ask someone to do something. That as much as she might hate what I make her do, she can be sure that I'm doing it because I love her.

I hope many, many New Yorkers are inspired by those ads to give teaching a try...

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

Nice adds! We should take the subway more often, we usually just walk from Grand Central to our destination, so we miss all the adds.
Olga

Natalie said...

Those ARE nice ads. It's truly amazing the influence a first grade teacher has on his/her students.

Carey and Norman said...

As a professional, I've thought about going into teaching. Not only would I love to teach, but I know having a school schedule would be easier with kids. Maybe one day soon. It is hard to find a school willing to hire you with another background in a smaller community. If I moved to Nashville, it wouldn't be that hard to find one. Loved the quotes on the subway!

Tina in CT said...

You've had some excellent teachers along the way.

I'd forgotten about those French letters from your students to Katya. Prized possessions.

I know all that you put into your teaching too.

Annie said...

Whoever suggested that baby gift was BRILLIANT! What a lovely idea.

....how our elementary teachers influenced us. Hm.... I have to ponder that.

When I think of teachers, I think of the wonderful influence of my HS Russian teacher. Mrs. Sampson. Her husband was a Russian professor at the Univ. of Colorado, so after having her for four years, I went on to have him for four years. I keep thinking I want to try to find them and write them about what a wonderful influence they had on my life. They'd be so happy I finally went to Russia, but so disappointed at the miserable state of my language skills.

They had the most wonderful household. They lived in a large house on campus with Mrs. Sampson's Greek parents, and with her sister, and the sister's husband (both French professors). That multi-lingual household just entranced me - as did the beautiful LIBRARY! A house with a library! What a wonderful concept! And I was also impressed that the French professors' children would speak to the Sampsons in Russian, to the grandparents in Greek, to their parents in French and to me in English.

Anonymous said...

loved the baby gift idea, loved the ads...this is esp meaningful as em is currently in 1st grade, and she loves her wonderful teacher, miss neff! i do remember my 1st grade teacher, mrs. johnson....those were the days!!!! since we live in such a tiny town, most parents also went to the local elementary school as their kids do now. this concept is so funny to me, in a way that seems so "sweet", but in a way that seems so boring....

miss you!
jeannie

superior said...

Some of the content is very worthy of my drawing, I like your information!
costume jewelry