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Respecting your elders

Teacher Appreciation week leaves a lasting impact on many of the teachers at Biddeford High School.

Michael Tenney, Staff Writer

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There is one week a year that teachers look forward to where they receive stickers, gifts, and other prizes from those that appreciate them most.

Teacher Appreciation Week led to many students trying to brighten the days of their favorite teachers. The Be The Change Team organized several gifts and events throughout the week to give back to the teachers. Social Science teacher Rebecca Auten appreciated the gifts.

“I liked the fact that this year it was more personalized,” said Auten. “Students had stickers to give out to teachers. I think the Be The Change Team did a really good job this year so it was more organized.”

Auten liked that it gave students an opportunity to thank their teachers no matter if they were shy or outgoing in class. Every student had an opportunity to give back.

“It gave students who may not necessarily say anything, whether they’re shy or not comfortable approaching teachers, it gives them a way to thank a teacher,” Auten said.

The Be The Change Team organized several gifts over the week. These gifts included trail mix, packets of seeds, flowers, and stickers. Junior and Be The Change Team member Ashlin Ruel liked giving back to the staff.

Ashlin Ruel.

“My favorite thing was probably the seeds,” said Ruel. “I think that was a really cute idea. It was a little seed packet, that was probably my favorite.”

Fellow Be The Change Team member and freshman Garrett Ross just wanted the staff to feel appreciated.

“We just tried to make teachers feel like they were actually welcome and hand out water bottles or some random stuff to make their day better,” Ross said.

Co-advisor for the Be The Change Team Heather Tremblay worked hard along with the students to make a personalized week for the teachers. The activities they came up with were handing out cupcakes, putting posters on teachers doors, awards, and water bottle flowers.

“When Mr. Sirois let us know the dates [of the week] we really only had a week to prep for it,” said Tremblay. “We had to rush some of that stuff [what we did in the past]. Even though we didn’t do as much as we normally do, I don’t think the staff noticed or minded.”

While Auten very much appreciates the gifts, she feels that the week was well deserved after a fairly difficult year.

“I think switching our grading program around on Infinite Campus has been frustrating for teachers,” said Auten. “We used it differently to record Standards Based Grading last year, and whenever you pile into a new system there’s a lot of [problems].”

She also feels that implementing Standards Based Grading challenged the staff throughout the year. However, she feels the staff is doing a good job at implementing it.

“I think we’re continuing to work hard as a staff to implement Standards Based Grading,” said Auten. “Students think it’s an adjustment for them, but we also have to adjust everything. When you’ve been doing something a certain way for a long time, especially if you feel like it’s successful, that can be frustrating for a lot of people.”

With all the hard work teachers put into their jobs, Ruel just wants them to know how much she appreciates them.

Teachers work really hard and I don’t think we do enough to appreciate them,

Teachers work really hard and I don’t think we do enough to appreciate them,”

— Ashlin Ruel

Ruel said.

Ross feels the same way as Ruel. He understands and sees the hard work teachers give and hopes they see the appreciation on the students end.

“Teachers go through a lot every year with students,” said Ross. “Students misbehave and all that. They deserve a week to themselves to think about why they’re working here and why they enjoy it so much.”

The Be The Change Team came back after a few year hiatus. This year was the first year the week was celebrated by the students for the first time in a while.

“They [the administration] usually provided lunch one day or breakfast another day,” said Tremblay. “It has always been recognized even if not by the students. We just think when it comes from the students, teachers really feel the appreciation they deserve.”

At the end of the week, Auten is thankful for everything she received over the week from students. Whether it be the stickers students gave her to say a small “thank you” or a packet of seeds, she is thankful for being recognized.
“I think that teachers appreciate it most when students give them a personal message, and I really appreciate everything the administration has done,” said Auten. “I think we’re really grateful this time of year. What really means the most to teachers is when a student tells you you’ve had a positive impact on them. I think that personalized message is the biggest gift on Teacher Appreciation Week.”

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Respecting your elders