Friday, August 30, 2019
Wings from Jean!
Fast forward fourteen years and guess who was there to cater my wedding reception....Miss Gerdes! Turns out that even though I moved out of Pennsylvania after high school, my mom ended up teaching Family & Consumer Science with Jean for years to follow so we were able to keep in touch. When I told my mom I wanted to quilt, Jean shipped me the quilting safety pins, and plastic rolled quilt holder thingies, and detailed instructions. A short time after her long distance tutelage, I completed a quilt for every bed in the house.
I love the idea of not only being a life-long learner, but a life-long teacher! When my mom talks about so-and-so being one of her kids, we, as her biological children don't take offense. My own children understand that my students have a special spot in my heart, and will be "my kids" for life, in the same way that Jean remains my teacher and cheerleader today. A few months ago when I found out that I was a top ten finalist for Georgia Teacher of the Year, Jean wanted to celebrate with me. She took a piece of artwork that my students made of an Eric Carle inspired butterfly, and created a stained glass version of the piece. Thanks to to a kind maintenance friend at the school, it is hanging in my classroom window. It serves as a reminder that I can be a second-mile-life-long teacher and advocate for my students, as Jean Gerdes is for me.