Tuesday, November 26, 2019

For Thanksgiving, thank a teacher

students-teacher by me
Teaching during the days up to and right after the holidays can be a challenge. Try having your students compose hand-written Thank You notes to a former teacher if you're looking for a quick activity around Thanksgiving and other holidays.

Here's a link to the activity

We did this in class today, and within a half hour my students wrote honest, poignant missives which of course is good in and of itself. But there's research to back it up why it's good for the people who receive the notes. In an article in Psychological Science, Kumar and Epley (2018) found that the people who received gratitude letters, "significantly underestimated how surprised recipients would be about why expressers were grateful, overestimated how awkward recipients would feel, and underestimated how positive recipients would feel."

Most of the notes were to people who were still teaching in our city, so my administration agreed to hand deliver them to those schools. Looking forward to what my students hear back from their former teachers.