There is nothing quite like receiving a hand-written card or letter in the mail addressed just to you. Last year, I wrote and sent Christmas cards to each of my students. It wasn't for their parents, their siblings or anyone else-- just them. Iridescent polar bear cards aren't much, but it was something small I could do to make each and every one of them feel special.
This year, the favor has been returned. Last week, I received a Christmas card from one of my students with learning disabilities. When I first met her at the start of the year, she was reading at a 2nd grade level and writing at a 1st.
Dear Ms. J. Shuy,
I wish you a Thanksgiving and Mary Christmas. I was going to tell you my new e-mail address so you can email me like you email Ms. Lee. How was your Thanksgiving? I went to Farmington with my ante, uncle and my cousin. So I am going because I am watching TV. So ask me, How was your Thanksgiving.
Sure, she spelled my name wrong and her sentence structure needs work. If I was still her teacher, we would talk about tone. But her point was made. I do feel special.