The best teachers do more than just give children an education. They inspire their students to succeed, no matter what may be holding them back.
Mrs. Clarkson is an amazing person. She decided to take up teaching because she cares so much about children.
Unlike some teachers, Mrs. Clarkson is able to see that every child is unique and has their own special skills.
She also knows that there are things that the SATs cannot test for.
While SATs give children an idea of how they’re performing in math, English and science, they don’t reflect how kind, loving and special every child is.
One of her students was Ben Twist. He has autism. Due to his condition, the chances of Ben scoring highly on his SATs were minimal. Despite this, Mrs. Clarkson saw that Ben was studying very hard.
But when results day came around, Ben saw that he had failed every subject. For a while, he was pretty devastated.
Then Mrs. Clarkson sent Ben something that completely changed his perspective.
It was a letter. Ben and his mother read it, and by the time they’d finished it, Ben’s mother was in tears.
The letter began with Mrs. Clarkson congratulating Ben. She reminded him that he had maintained a highly positive attitude throughout study. She also noted that Ben completing his SATs was a success in itself.
Mrs. Clarkson had written a letter that really lifted Ben and his mother’s spirits.
“A very important piece of information I want you to understand is that these tests only measure a little bit of you and your abilities […] Ben Twist is made up of many other skills and talents that we at Lansbury Bridge see and measure in other ways.”
But Mrs. Clarkson wasn’t done yet. She went on to remind Ben of everything that he was excelling in that the SATs couldn’t reflect.
She said that Ben’s artistic talents, his teamwork, his increasing independence, his athletic skills, his friendliness, his design skills and his musical skills were all incredible.
Mrs. Clarkson then reassured Ben that all of those talents and skills showed that he was “continuing to develop as a lovely bright young man.”
She finished her letter by saying “Well done Ben. We are very proud of you.”
Ben will likely remember these kind words for his entire life. They have completely changed the way he thinks about the future. Instead of just having a set of SAT results that say that he is underperforming, Ben has something that is encouraging him to keep going and keep fostering his many positive attributes.
But one thing that Mrs. Clarkson couldn’t have expected is the praise that her kind words would receive online.
Ben’s mother posted the letter to Twitter, telling the world that she was in tears after she had read it.
This tweet has since had over 12,000 likes, 5,800 retweets and 600 comments.
People have been saying things like this:
Since this letter went viral, Ben has started a new school year. He likes his new teachers but misses Mrs. Clarkson immensely.
Every single teacher in the world should strive to encourage their students in the way that Mrs. Clarkson has done and continues to do so.
If every teacher took a little time out to remind their students that they all had their own unique skills, people would have much happier, much more fulfilling lives.
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Source: Gail Twist