Pre-smiling, Pre-writing

Dear Terrence,

You’re never one to leave me bored: I can never pen you down (no, not a mistake, just a pun — remember, we talked about them in class last quarter?) because you always do what I least expect.

Today, for instance, during the state-required not-so-high-stakes testing (high stakes for me, not for thee), as I was doing my state-law-required walk around, I noticed the little miracle: there you sat, pre-writing. There on your scratch sheet were a little web of ideas in one corner, a brainstormed list with a few items crossed out, and the beginnings of an outline.

So all the stuff we’ve been doing in class has been getting through?

As teachers, we always console ourselves with the notion that, though progress might not be immediately visible, though results might belie the effort we’ve put into planning and delivering your education, all we might have done is simply plant seeds that we might not even get to see germinate. Today, I got to see a scraggly stalk with its first bud slowly opening up.

Thanks. You made my day with those scribbles.

Indebted as always,
Your Teacher

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