Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Thank you, and "See you later"

To my 2012-2013 students:

I wanted to take a few minutes (before Baby Kirch takes over my life) to do what I usually get to do in person every year - celebrate the year and thank all of you for being such great students and people.

From the first day back in August, I know many of you walked into class not knowing what to expect, and being worried by the rumors you heard about my class or the flipped classroom or just math analysis in general.  I didn't know you, and you didn't know me.  First of all, thank you for being open and willing to try a new way of teaching and learning (not that you had a choice...and I know some of you took a while to come on board, but better late than never!).  Your positive attitudes and willingness to work hard helped this year to be so successful.  Throughout the course of this year I think I can confidently say that I had the privilege to get to know each and every one of you individually and that you had the opportunity to get to know your classmates in a deeper way than what you expected.  You have all touched my life in one way or another and I am grateful for that.

I am so proud of the growth I have seen you make as both students and as young adults.  I am so proud of the challenges you have overcome as I have required you to do things you've never had to do before (make videos, have a blog, learn in a new way...).  And I am so proud of how I have seen you learn more than just math skills to memorize, but how math concepts are so interconnected and applicable in life.

More than math though, I hope you take with you from this class those important life skills I tried day in and day out to model for you.  The importance of integrity.  The value of hard work.  The skills of collaboration.  That is what will stick with you, long after you have forgotten that solving an SSA triangle means there could be 0, 1, or 2 solutions (what, we learned that? Yes :)).

We have had our good times and our hard times, our ups and our downs.  I will never forget our last day and how much time and work you put into BK's surprise shower and the appreciation I felt from all of you.  I will always remember the Polynomial End Behavior Dance (that my husband is now famous for) and all the songs I "made" you sing :).  I still remember announcing to you that I was pregnant and having half of you claim you'd already known for a while (so much for secrets!).  There are so many more moments and inside jokes I could continue to mention but just know that I really enjoyed this year with all of you.

While I hope you have learned a lot from me, I hope you also know I have learned a lot from you.  So thank you for allowing me to be a part of your lives this last year.

This isn't goodbye, it is "See You Later"... because I sure hope you will make at least a few treks up Kirch Mountain next year to say hello!

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