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Teacher Appreciation: Ms. Levine's Power of Faith



Joined: 11/16/2012
Posts: 5
PHILosophical
My parents thought the name of my class in elementary school, the “Special Education Class for Handicapped Children,” was horrible. Because of my receptive and expressive language disability, I was placed in a self–contained class with kids who had learning disabilities, language impairments, and mild degrees of emotional disturbance. Looking after us during school was the cheerful and compassionate Ms. Levine.

The job of teaching children with developmental disabilities demanded a mountain of patience and commitment. The challenge hardly fazed Ms. Levine. She loved and appreciated us regardless of our disabilities. Even with my limitations, I sensed her strong commitment.

I was too young back then, but now I realize how demanding and challenging her job had been. Her job was not limited to teaching basic literacy and numeracy, but also teaching basic life skills such as interactions, kinds of thing that are often taken for granted. A simple task as following directions was a big leap for me, yet my failed attempts never bothered Ms. Levine. She never showed any signs of stress or disappointments with her students’ delayed progresses; she firmly believed that we were just having a “slow start” and that not all children learn the same way.

Ms. Levine focused on the special gifts each of us carried, which could easily go unnoticed due to our deficiencies. When she learned I had picked up the violin, she often asked me to play a piece of my choice in front of the class. I loved the opportunity to show off my talent, and I practiced harder in the hopes of going professional someday.

I owe even my passion for storytelling and writing to Ms. Levine, who had helped me uncover it. In short time, I had progressed from my early stint struggling with the alphabet to hand–crafting books. I still keep the works I created in her class, such as Amazing Spotted Joe–Eyed Weed, a picture book about the titular weed, and Princess Levine’s Magic Flute, a short, fantastical story starring my teacher.

After 5 years in the program, it was determined that I no longer needed to be in the program. Ms. Levine said to my mom, “the District thinks this is a success story, but I don’t think so. I always knew he was bright and intelligent.” Ms. Levine had faith in me for all those years, and thanks to her, I overcame my limitations.

I am now a rising senior in high school, playing violin in the orchestra and aspiring toward becoming a writer. My hope is that by instilling positive ideas into people's’ minds, I can help better the world. Ms. Levine taught me that having faith in someone can make a difference in that someone’s life. I am the testimonial of her conviction and indeed, a success story.
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Comment by thiegsr


Joined: 11/6/2008
Posts: 702
On behalf of the entire StageofLife.com editorial board, I would like to congratulate you for your May 2015 Teacher Appreciation Essay being selected as one of our top 11 finalists. Our editors are currently working on choosing the first place essay.

We will post all winning essay results by June 30th. You can check this page for the results after June 30th:
http://www.stageoflife.com/Writing_Contests/WritingContestWinners.aspx

Thanks for adding your voice to our mission “Changing the World . . . One Story at a Time” and feel free to share your accomplishment with the world.

Sincerely,
Rebecca Thiegs
StageofLife.com Co-Founder and Education Consultant
Posted: Monday, June 8, 2015 10:49:50 PM
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Comment by thiegsr


Joined: 11/6/2008
Posts: 702
On behalf of the entire StageofLife.com editorial board, I would like to congratulate you for your May 2015 Teacher Appreciation Essay being selected as our first place essay!

We will post all winning essay results by June 30th. You can check this page for the results after June 30th:
http://www.stageoflife.com/Writing_Contests/WritingContestWinners.aspx

Thanks for adding your voice to our mission “Changing the World . . . One Story at a Time” and feel free to share your accomplishment with the world.

Sincerely,
Rebecca Thiegs
Posted: Thursday, June 18, 2015 7:59:27 PM
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Comment by thiegsr


Joined: 11/6/2008
Posts: 702
Hi! We wanted to let you know that we have created the Teen Trend Report for the Teacher Appreciation writing contest. Feel free to check it out and share it with friends, family and the teacher you wrote about in your winning essay.

http://www.stageoflife.com/StageHighSchool/TeensandTeacherAppreciation.aspx

Thanks again for sharing your story with the world!

- Rebecca
Posted: Monday, August 17, 2015 3:16:29 PM
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