In addition to these letters from my 5th grade class, one of my 6th grade classes gave me a parting gift as well when I finished teaching in July in the form of a book of letters. Some of my favorite notes are included below.
***The boys in this class drew the Statue of Liberty and labeled the base of the statue (not pictured) with my last name. Yes, I am the Statue of Liberty (thanks, guys!). They also wrote, “All boys here love you but now we miss you” along with, “Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year” and “I hope you won’t be ill”.
The boys also sketched a soccer field, in which FC Bayern is playing against FC Jennifer. It’s difficult to read, but the score is Jennifer, 51 to FC Bayern, 10.
This young girl, Annika, combined the US flag with the German flag, which I thought was really creative. I had told them many times that I was not moving back to America, that I was staying in Germany (at a new school in a new city) but they didn’t seem to understand that; most of them wrote, “now you’ll go back to America” in their notes. Maybe they just really wanted me to go back to America…
Beneath the title of ‘Good Luck and Goodbye!"’, this student drew 4 cars racing each other. In last place is the principal of our school, in 3rd place is Arnold Schwarzenegger, in 2nd place is the main English teacher at our school….and in first place is me. It should also be noted that Arnold Schwarzenegger’s car appears to be on fire.
One student felt that sketching a scene from Teletubbies would better express his feelings toward my departure.
In the lower right corner of this letter, my student Niklas warns me (in German) to beware of gangsters. When I asked the main teacher why he felt the need to include this, she said, “Ohhh, most of the kids think of America as the most dangerous place on earth…you know, lots of gangs and guns and stabbings and killings….lots of dark alleys and murders”.
This student wrote to me, in German, “You’ve taught English well. We will miss you”. Then, he switched to English to write, “Good bye” and “Good Luck”. Backwards.
My student Katja drew a mouse named Diddlina at the bottom and, at the top, wrote: It was nice that you were here. Much luck in the future. Mabey I’ll see you again. I don’t think it, but you can’t know it.
‘Least she’s honest.
And then this student reminds us all that sometimes…when words fail you…it’s best to just draw a giant peace sign.
Note: For this new school year, I’m teaching at a new German school in a new German city.
So much newness in one sentence!