Thank you is important. So important that every time that I hand something to our 13-month-old, I say, “Thank you.” And every time he hands something to me, I say, “Thank you.” With an exaggerated smile. So that he learns that “thank you” = good.
Good when someone holds the door for you.
Good when someone passes you the salt.
Gives you a card.
Makes you dinner.
Puts the Legos into the box, not just on top.
But thank you isn’t so good for teachers.
For teachers who compliment Anne Marie on making her own ponytail or choosing to wear leg warmers over regular pants.
For teachers who listen to Bobby tell the same baseball stories over and over.
For teachers who coax the best work out of Mathew when he’s in a bad mood.
Who educate the kids about so much more than phonics.
Who patiently answer my questions even though the answers are probably in the newsletter that I can’t find.
Who sacrifice time with their own children to help mine.
Who would protect my children with their very lives if needed.
Thank you seems a bit um, paltry. So, instead of “thank you,” I say, “I pledge.”
I pledge to support legislation that helps you do your job.
I pledge to try my darnedest to send in that frappucino bottle, that purple yarn, that unicorn tail that you really need for a project.
I pledge to believe that what you are doing furthers the curriculum.
I pledge to not believe everything our kids say about you.
I pledge to look the other way when you make typos in your newsletters and emails.
I pledge to listen to you when you have a concern about our kids.
I pledge to only allow our kids to bring half of the posters/cards/jewelry/pencil holders they make you.
I pledge to appeal to the school board on your behalf.
I pledge to always give you the benefit of the doubt when talking to other parents.
And I pledge to show our kids that teachers are to be respected above all other professions, even when society tells us otherwise.
And also, thank you.