Poetry Friday: Thank-You Notes to Elementary School Teachers

September 3rd, 2010

This week’s poem comes from our very own Charles Fuhrken, author of What Every Elementary Teachers Needs to Know About Reading Tests.


Thank-You Notes to Elementary School Teachers
Charles Fuhrken

To Mrs. Box,
First grade teacher,
For days I stared
out the window at
the playground
when I was supposed to
read about a boy
named Dick and a girl
named Jane. Instead of corner
time, you gave me
a pencil and a Big
Chief tablet and let me invent
my own stories—and I forgot all about

To Mrs. Meischen,
Second grade teacher,
I still have
the first place
prize I won in your spelling
bee—a ribbon of
blue construction paper cut out and
laminated. Down to me and
Gloria, the word was
“to be grateful for”—and I still

To Mrs. Torres,
Third grade teacher,
Each day after
lunch we sprawled out
on the story rug and clung to
tales about a chocolate
factory, a red fern, and a giant
Spinning words like
Charlotte in her web, you
were Radiant,
Terrific, and Some

To Teachers Everywhere,
We students remember
ant aquariums and Weekly
Reader, cursive
handwriting and talent shows, sock
puppets and science
fairs, show and
tell and field trips, times
tables and i before e. Moments glued together in our minds like
the collages you treasured from us, displayed in the hallway, and praised
with bright eyes and a contagious

Entry Filed under: Poetry Friday

4 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Mary Lee  |  September 4th, 2010 at 6:57 am

    Thank you, Mr. Fuhrken, for the lovely note. It’s good to remember that bits and pieces of every year of teaching are tucked in children’s (now adults’) memories!

  • 2. Nancy  |  September 5th, 2010 at 6:51 pm

    What a lovely poem! And how nice that elementary teachers are remembered with such affection.

  • 3. Elma Torres  |  May 16th, 2011 at 10:37 pm

    Beautifully written, Charles. What a pleasure to have had the opportunity to have a gifted and talented student like you in the classroom. Thank you. I’m deeply touched to represent the many elementary teachers who work so hard to make a difference in a child’s life.

  • 4. Susan Taylor Brown –&hellip  |  October 6th, 2013 at 1:37 pm

    […] Over at on the Stenhouse Blog they have a great poem from Stenhouse author Charles Fuhrken. […]

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