It’s appreciation month for Powerful Words and many of our member schools are getting ready to celebrate “Teacher Appreciation Week.” That means that it’s a great time to write a letter of appreciation and gratitude to all our favorite teachers, coaches, instructors, and mentors in our lives.
At the end of last year, we discussed what to include in a letter of appreciation—but it stands repeating. Whether your child is writing the letter, your teen, or your writing it with them, these guidelines stand. So get your pens ready—and let’s talk gratitude!
- Be as specific as possible: Refrain from being too cliché and general. Tell them exactly why you appreciate them.
- Use paper or a card that allows you to express your unique self: Sometimes, those pre-written cards don’t cut it. Ask your child to create his own stationary or use a beautiful blank card in which you can write the message instead.
- Use a greeting and a closing that shows respect: Remind your kids to forget “hey,” “hi,” and “see you around.” Let’s show our teachers that we respect them and regard them highly.
- Handwrite it: Even if you don’t love your handwriting, handwritten notes always beat typed notes any day. Make it personal!
- Be gracious: Even if you and the teacher don’t always agree, highlight some of the ways that s/he has helped your child.
- Talk about how the lessons will influence your child: Which lessons will stick with your child for years to come? What changes have you seen in your child?
- Talk about the past and the future: The teachers and coaches at your local schools and Powerful Words schools have been helping your child for quite some time! What did you think when you first met this person? What did your child think?
- Don’t email it! Send the letter through the snail mail or give it directly to the person. Again, it’s about making it personal.
I recently received a beautiful book of letters from one of our Powerful Words Member Schools in Connecticut, filled with letters of appreciation from the students. What a gift that we will cherish! I can’t tell you how wonderful it is to hear how others feel about the work we do. It IS important to send letters of appreciation. You might think teachers know how you feel of that they don’t need to hear it from you, but coming from an educators standpoint—we appreciate it!
Many thanks to our Powerful Parents, our Powerful schools—and to you!