LIFE

Top-Notch Teacher Writes On Desks To Inspire Her Students

by Rebecca Endicott
Becca is a writer and aspirational dog owner living in NYC.

I think that when we look back, almost all of us remember at least one teacher growing up who made us believe that anything was possible.

When you’re a sensitive kid with a lot of learning and growing to do, and a lot of questions to ask, there’s nothing like knowing that your teacher has your back and is watching out for you.

Whether that’s the first-grade teacher who helps a tiny little one develop a love of reading, or the chorus teacher so universally beloved that the whole school rallies to her cause, teachers are the backbone of our education system.

In fact, it’s almost impossible to estimate the value of a good teacher, one who has a heartwarming devotion to the kids, and encourages students in the belief that they’re worthy of success. That kind of teacher builds bridges, opens door, and changes lives.

Chandni Langford, a fifth-grade teacher in New Jersey’s Woodbury School System, proved herself just such a teacher last week.

And now, photos of a special surprise she prepared for her students at Evergreen Avenue Elementary are going viral — and it’s no wonder why.

What do you think of this teacher’s inspirational gesture? Do you have a childhood teacher who holds a special place in your heart? Let us know in the comments below!

As the school year begins to wind down, students and parents all over the country are facing the looming specter of standardized testing.

Every state has its own specific testing system that evaluates kids at the end of the school year, often based on Common Core Principles.

In New Jersey, the high-pressure, high-stress tests that fifth-graders take are known as the PARCC, a testing system shared with some other states.

Mrs. Langford, aware of how much pressure her students are under, decided to give them a little boost in preparation for that start of testing during the first week of May.

Most writing in the classroom has to be covered during testing, but before the kids came in, she decided to write an individualized message to each and every student in the class — across the top of their desks.

She wrote in dry-erase marker, so that the messages could easily be wiped off before testing began, but made a special effort to let kids know how awesome they all are.

On one desk, she writes to a student, “Learning is your superpower!” while other desks are adorned with messages like, “Grow your brain!” and “It is going to be worth it!”

Her messages are clearly tailored to the individual learning style and needs of each kid in the class, targeting the specific challenges and strengths of each student.

One student, who has never taken the test before, is reassured that it will all be OK, a great message for a kid who might be especially nervous about the test.

Instead of signing “Mrs. Langford,” she also made a point of signing “Your Teachers,” a great way of showing the kids that everyone is pulling for them to succeed.

She also left a pair of donut holes on each desk as a special treat for the kids.

After all, if anyone understands how stressful standardized testing is for kids, it’s the teachers who do their best to instill the knowledge and skills that help students work toward their potential and excel on exams.

Facebook/WCPS

The school system was quick to applaud Mrs. Langford’s innovative system for encouraging her kids.

Evergreen Avenue Elementary is part of Woodbury City Public Schools, in Woodbury, NJ.

This past week, the school system’s official Facebook page posted pictures of the desk, which quickly went viral, receiving 15,000 likes and 17,000 shares in a matter of days.

Along with the photos, the school system also posted this heartfelt message in support of the tactic:

“To motivate her 5th grade students, Mrs. Langford at Evergreen Avenue prepared inspirational, growth-mindset messages for every one of her students. Each personalized note was written in dry-erase marker on students’ desks so they could be cleaned up prior to starting PARRC.”

It must be a great feeling for students and parents alike to know they are in such good hands!

 

If you love to see innovative and inspirational teachers like Mrs. Langford, check out the video of special education teacher Chris Ulmer complimenting his students at the start of each day.

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