We often do not know the impact we make with our students til years later. This year, I had numerous moments that have affirmed my decisions about my teaching philosophy. Multiple parents and students have shared their appreciation for the time I took to get to know their child and how they learn. I believe that every student can learn in their time and their way. I want to share a couple of notes I received. On Facebook. (permission was obtained to share as they are). The students are entering high school, but I first met them in Kindergarten and first grade.
April Lippert Padalino I found this today while getting Joey ready for his first day of high school tomorrow; an essay he wrote about a teacher who impacted him most. So sweet that I would find this today of all days and I will remember to tell him to shine his light tomorrow! (My tag line everyday.)
By Joey: I learn best when the teacher knows how to teach a topic well and knows ways to allow students to remember that topic for years to come.
A teacher I learned a lot from was Mrs. Padalino, my reading teacher at St. John the Baptist School from kindergarten to second grade. Her teaching style reflected basic skills in teaching young children how to read.
I was a very advanced reader at the time so reading was my favorite subject. Her ways of teaching about the basics of reading were extremely helpful and made me the reader and writer I am today.
In every place where there was a book in a classroom, you could see a chart with four columns, showing each of the four skills you need to develop to read, such as comprehension and fluency. Her ways of teaching were easy to pick up and learn, but advanced enough to allow me to love reading and writing every day.
My most fond memory from that year was reading Dogsong with the advanced reading group, which included second graders. I was the only first grader in the group, and it was an honor to be there. I remember being so proud of myself while reading in that group. The reason I remember the book so fondly is because of the detail in the book, but also because of Mrs. Padalino, I knew how to read and understand every aspect of the book, from the first to last page.
My love for reading and writing that I acquired that year has stayed with me my entire life and might lead to a career choice for me as an author.
My class at St. John’s was very large and very hard to handle, quite similar to the 2018 class at HFS today, but at the end of the day, Mrs. Padalino helped all of us learn and grow in our reading skills. And she loved what she did.
There was never a day where she didn’t have a smile on her face and had fun with the class.
I would like to thank Mrs. Padalino for everything she has done for all of her students throughout her career. She always told us to shine our light and make good choices. I try to remember those words every day.
Can you say serious waterfalls! Whoa! Mind blown!
Another mom chimed in
From Meghan, Ok, I'm literally tearing up over here ! April Lippert Padalino has been an amazing foundation in Portia's education. Portia is VERY left sided. She is an amazing artist, she is empathetic, she is not a traditional student. Mrs. Padalino saw that in her . It is a gift when a teacher sees the whole student as a person, not just their academic inclinations. Mrs. Padalino worked endless amounts of time in order to make sure Portia was reading well and her grammar was on point! I assure you, now at the tender age of 14, she is very quick to correct anyone who writes "your.....but means.....you're" It actually irritates her, lol.
They reminded me of my Why? To advocate for education opportunities that fit the students and teachers. We need to listen to our students and learn from them. We need to listen to our teachers and learn from them too. In the 17+ years I have been in school, I learned so much just from being immersed in schools with colleagues and students, They were and are the best education.
Remember your why, build relationships, and Bring Education to Life for each and every student.