2013 Poem and Letter to Students

Although I started teaching in August 2000, I wrote my first Letter to Students in 2013. I have since made the Letter to Students a tradition. Before I publish the 2015 Letter to Students, I thought I would republish the letter that started it all . . .


I am asked why I care about my students.
Why I choose to think positive in a cloud of grey.
Why I put my heart into them.

“You can’t save them all!”
“Did you hear what he did last year?”
“I am a teacher. If she doesn’t want to learn, then she shouldn’t be in my class.”

But I know I can’t save them all.
I just won’t be the reason they fall.

I don’t care what he did last year.
I only care about what he does today and tomorrow.

If she doesn’t want to learn, I must ask what can I do to change that?

I care about my students because
Sometimes they have a bad day.
Sometimes they don’t have someone who cares about them.
Sometimes some students will someday remember that somebody cared.

I want to be that somebody.
~ Mrs. Jennifer Scott

This past week I was reading my Twitter feed when I found an article entitled "Two Letters That All Students Should Receive" by Angela Maiers. The letters were written by another teacher named Arin Kress on her blog Hate Chalk. These two letters inspired me to pull out a poem I wrote about my students and use it as a way to let them know why I teach. Though written in 2012, I had never the shared the poem with my students. “I AM a Teacher” was printed for you on blue butterfly stationary as a reminder that someone cares for you and believes that you can fly.

I agree with Arin Kress that you are all geniuses. From the moment you were born, the first moment you giggled, crawled, spoke, and walked, you were a creative genius with the world ahead of you. You excelled in something – academics, art, athletics, and/or some other adventure. If academics has never been your strong suit, never fear, for I am here to help you shine.

I also agree with Arin Kress and Angela Maiers that You Matter. I agree with Ms. Kress's words “YOU MATTER to your family, YOU MATTER to your friends, YOU MATTER to so many people – You already matter to ME!”

Your Eighth Grade year will be difficult, not simply because of my high expectations, but also because you are testing your independence and who you will be. You will make mistakes. I will make mistakes. Your parents may make mistakes. What you need to remember is pull through. You must never forget that You Matter. And, you must never lose sight of your successful future.

I AM a TEACHER who sees you for what you are at this moment and want you want to be in the future. I know that you are not perfect nor would I want you to be, but as I write this letter under a canopy of stars, my one desire is that you have a successful year.

Plan to work hard, harder than you have in your entire life. Plan to make a few mistakes along the way. Plan to let your genius shine.


Mrs. Jennifer Scott

2013 Letter to Students


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