Last year I wrote every one of my kids a personal note at the end of the year. It was a valiant attempt, but with 140 kids, I vowed never to do that again. Even though I tried to personalize all of them, after a while, they all started to sound the same, and they weren't really anything of substance.
I decided to write only two letters this year--one to my seniors and one to my juniors (I don't teach any other grade). I could try to explain both my love and disdain for these letters, but Sam Shah pretty much summed it up a few days ago here.
I wish I could put into words all my emotions; I wish I could write exactly what I want these kids to know. I wish a letter would suffice, but it never will. Regardless, I attempted a one-page note.
I feel a little vulnerable publishing these for anyone to read. But when I blog, sometimes I get so wrapped up in the details of lessons, that who I am as a teacher maybe doesn't quite come through. So this is a small attempt to combat that.