Today was my last day at Hamburg Middle School. I left with so much more knowledge of who I am as an educator and what impact I want to leave on my students. The students at Hamburg made me love what I do more than I ever thought possible. I learned though this experience why in fact I create myself and what drives me as an educator. My students made me want to be better. I became a listening and an encourager a soundboard for their thoughts and artistic endeavors. I provided my students with dialogue and confidence and made sure they knew how important their voices were. I became a part of a community and learned my role as a leader. I build relationship with people in the building and felt a sense of pride and accomplishment in what I was doing. I learned my greatest strength is my patience and calm demeanor with my students. I built and demonstrated my teaching philosophy in all that I did.
This post card moment explores my last day with my students. The date is significant in that it is one I will never forget. The image and colors I used were significant in that it demonstrated the criteria I used for the last lesson I had my 6th graders do. My last and final memory was one that happened just as the day was ending. One of my students that really had a hard time behaving in class and who had been kicked out of the art room prior to my last 3 days of teaching came in at the end of the day to say goodbye. He approached me by saying that he would miss me and that he really appreciated all the help I gave him, that “no one helped him like I did”. He they gave me a hug goodbye and I realized in that very moment that I had made a difference. If I were to leave a school having done one thing it would have been to make a difference. Dylan and the rest of my students at Hamburg Middle School allowed me to feel that I had done just that. It reminded me that art connects, it creates change, it moves us and inspires within us all.