Not all teachers were the same. While some inspired our young souls who had no clue about the world around them to follow our dreams, others had to prove themselves to gain kids’ respect.
In some incidents, teachers would also lose our trust, which was very hard to gain back. Because teachers act as role models, and if they don’t, this whole dynamic crumbles from the bottom up.
So this interesting thread from Ask Reddit gives us a rare glimpse into (former) students' memories about their teachers, both good and bad. “What did that one teacher do to you that you'll never forget?” someone asked, and the stories started rolling in. Below we selected some of the most interesting ones.
#1At my high school, we had an annual week long science trip, fully paid for by fundraising. Only 4 people were selected to go each year. My sophomore year, I was chosen. I knew there was no way I was going to be allowed to go. I had never been out of the state, never been on a single vacation, never been on a plane and never been away from home for more than 24 hours. My parents were incredibly conservative and immediately said no. I had a science teacher who just didn't accept the no. Instead of just giving up and selecting someone else, he called and tried to convince my parents. When that didn't work, he came to my house and had dinner with my family to convince my dad that I would be an asset and he would be doing me a disservice by not letting me go. He sat and ate my mom's terrible cooking and talked to my parents for over 2 hours until he got a "we'll think about it". Then he just kept following up.
I had never had someone in my corner like that before, who was willing to go to bat for me like that. He wore them down and it was the best week of my teenage life. I'd never seen the ocean. 20 years later and I can still recall every detail of that trip. It was a major pivot point for me.
Image credits: chrissyv54
#2Had a highschool art teacher who would let me stay in his classroom during lunches. Always gave me half his sandwich and other extra food because he knew I didn't eat much otherwise.
Edit: He would also keep a drawer in the classroom stocked with snacks so that I could swing by and grab something between classes if I needed. No, he never did anything "questionable", and no, I never "fell asleep" after eating the sandwiches. He was just a kind person :)
Image credits: pseudonymous_lemon
#3A girl in our High School English Lit. class was talking too much, so the teacher moved her next to me because I was quiet. I thought this little chatterbox was cute, so I asked her out. We've been married 54 years.
Image credits: ImA12GoHawks
#43rd grade-Mrs Jones. My dad had just deserted us and we were suddenly destitute. She bought my school pictures for us and paid my lunch bill all year. She never said a word about it. Only found out later. Bless her
Image credits: Ljmeeds1
#5Called my mum while she was at work to tell her I'd written one of the best things he'd ever seen as a teacher.
Image credits: Zalanor1
#6My first grade teacher bought me clothes, got my doctor to recognize my epilepsy and diagnose it, and sent me to another school for highly capable students. I lived in a bad situation but she gave me my life back and now I have been accepted into college as a student athlete, with a nearly full ride scholarship. My epilepsy is still with me, I work two jobs now, but I have a future because of her. Thank you Mrs. Trudeau for believing in me.
Image credits: JustADistanceRunner
#7Sixth grade my dad was diagnosed with cancer. I was caught copying my friends homework because my dad had a treatment the night before and I was unable to do it - that’s how my teacher learned he had cancer. Throughout the year she was so supportive and reassured me that I could submit assignments late if needed. About a year or two later I saw her again and she asked about my dad. I told her he had sadly passed away and we cried together. It was so heartfelt and I realized how much she cared.
Image credits: twixandmix
#8I faked my way through 4th and 5th grade math. I never understood how to do long division, but managed to hide that from the teachers and answer test questions by reverse multiplication - basically guess a number and multiply it out and see how close I would get, and keep doing it until I got the answer.
My 6th grade math teacher figured out that I was faking, and had no idea how to actually divide anything. She had me come in one afternoon to “help with cleaning the erasers” (all the kids fought for this privilege , so I was thrilled), sat me down and tutored me until I grasped the concept. Bless you, Mrs. Gillespie!
Image credits: SaltyAbility
#9Senior year I was placed in a Freshman typing class. Everyone Else was chatty and goofed off, but I wanted to learn to type, so I really put in a lot of effort. I only had two classes in the morning, and the rest of the day I was a waitress, as I was pretty much on my own in my senior year. I got called into work on the day of our class final, so I went to work and missed the final. When I showed up to class the next day, I apologized to the teacher for missing the final. He asked me “do you want to know the grade you got?” When I replied yes, he said “I gave you an A because if you had been here, that’s what you would’ve gotten.” I never forgot that. Thank you Mr. Wyatt.
Image credits: hello_specific_ocean
#10I was anorexic when I was in school. She took me aside after class and told me that if I didn’t stop doing what I was doing to myself I was going to die. That my body was going to start shutting down, my organs would fail, that it would not be beautiful and I was going to die an awful and painful death.
I still catch myself slipping back into that mindset ten years later sometimes. But I will never forget that. She saved my life.
Image credits: Gar_Eval
#11I called somebody stupid once when they got a question wrong and the teacher instantly made me stand up and spell “stupid” backwards. Got it wrong with the pressure and learnt a lesson that day.
Image credits: plathree
#12When I was in 5th grade in 1975, my parents were divorcing and I was living with my abusive father. If I didn't get B+ or better on my report card, I got the belt. Not a little, mind you. A full-on beat down, and probably denial of meals for a while. The '70's with an abusive parent were a very different time.
My father had quite a reputation in the small Pennsylvania town I lived in (McKean, PA). He was known as an incredibly strict person, and our neighbors all hated him. But this was a different time, and that sort of behavior was ignored in public.
My 5th grade math teacher, Mr. Cunningham, scared me. He looked a bit like my father, and didn't suffer any nonsense in his classroom at all. I struggled with mathematics, and it just didn't make sense to me.
We got our first report card in 5th grade. These were the days where you could carry a card with you for the day, and the teacher would write your grade on the report card. You would then have to take it home, and have a parent sign it to acknowledge that they had seen your grades.
So far, through the day, the grades were good. A's, mostly, an A-, but all good.
Math was my last class of the day before I had to catch the bus.
When my report card came back to me, I froze in terror. I recall this moment like a photograph. The grade was a D, written in pen, right there on the report card. I knew what was coming. The blood drained out of my face.
Mr. Cunningham dismissed the class, and I was frozen in my desk. Scared of what he would do, and even more scared of what my father would do.
All the other kids had left the classroom, and my world around me was gone - just me, my books, and the D staring at me telling me that my 10-year old self was going to suffer. Badly.
I felt a hand on my shoulder, and I shook and started crying.
Mr. Cunningham looked at me. He took my report card out of my hand, and walked up to his desk. He called me up there. I was still terrified, probably shaking, definitely trying to hide my crying and failing.
He got out a black pen and changed the D into a B+. He didn't say anything, he just looked at me. He knew. He could see the signs, and he knew how terrified I was and why.
I had no idea an adult could be so compassionate, and had no idea it was even possible to change something like that.
He handed my report card back to me, and said two words that have stayed with me to this day. "Earn this." He put his hand on my shoulder and said, "I know. It's not fair, and I'm sorry. You're a smart kid, and you can get this. Just ask me for help."
It was a simple act of kindness, and it's stuck with me to this day. The math grade didn't matter - I'm successful enough in my 50's to not have that come up on my permanent record. But the permanent change of my impression of Mr. Cunningham is still very much with me.
If you have power over other people, you have to wield that power with compassion. You have to tailor that power to meet the needs of the individual. That is the lesson I learned that day from Mr. Cunningham.
The next terms I got a B+ or better. I assume it's because I worked really hard, and Mr. Cunningham helped me out at lunch - or, he was kind because he knew.
Thank you, Mr. Cunningham. This was 45 years ago, and I still remember you.
Image credits: hmasing
#13My physics teacher in high school hosted an annual trip to Walt Disney World in Orlando for 15-20 kids for over a week. I was one of the better and most interested students in his class. He was an incredible teacher who found examples in physics everywhere. He also used to work for Disney prior to teaching.
Since my family was not so well off and I could not afford the trip to Walt Disney World, I declined when he asked me if I was going to join. He probed a bit and he somehow found the funds to have me join without me even inquiring. I don't know if he pulled school money or there was a surplus, but either way, that was one of my best memories from that school.
I still keep in touch with him 15 years later.
Image credits: marincho
#14“Accidentally” left paperwork on my desk that showed government grade projections based on family income which meant I should have failed the class knowing full well it would trigger me to make sure I got the best grade in the entire school year.
Every other teacher told me how smart I was and how well I could do if I applied myself. This SOB knew that was not the way to make me work haha
Image credits: SmartyMarty85
#15Senior year of high school. I was on the wrestling team and I had cut about 30lbs that year, from 170 down to 140.
I happened to have the same math teacher 3 years in a row so we really got to know each other. First name basis and all that. She knew how much weight I cut for the season, I told her and it was obvious just from my face. I wasn't fat before my cut either, I had a 6 pack. She had a strict no eating in class policy. That'll be important in a minute.
The day after the wrestling season ends I walk into math class and sit down. She walks over to my desk and puts a whole apple pie right in front of me (she knew it was my favorite), handed me a fork, and said she'll ignore the no eating rule for 1 day. I finished that whole pie in maybe 30 minutes.
Linda, I'll never forget that. You absolutely made my day.
Image credits: reusethisname
#16In 5th grade I had this teacher who was very... gruff. Most of us didn’t like her because she was such a hardass. Like military style with discipline and homework completion. She wasn’t mean, but she wasn’t nice either.
Then I found out my parents were getting a divorce. I showed up to school one day visibly upset, kinda shaky, and had obviously been been crying. She basically grunt rasped “Decidedly-Undecided, hallway. Now.” I was so not in the mood to be scolded and I knew I was a mess... I stomped out into the hallway. She told me she knew what was happening at home, asked me if I was ok, then listened to me sob and break down about how I felt. She gave me a hug and asked if I wanted to spend an hour or so in the library since she knew I loved books and then I could ground myself.
It was so unexpectedly kind. I will never forget it. I found out later she was so gruff and short with us because she’d been teaching for a long ass time and kids are mean. She had some sort of health condition that left her in pain most of the time and she had to use a cane which caused her to hunch a bit. Over the years all the meanness of the kids made her a little hard and cold. But she really did care about her students.
Image credits: Decidedly-Undecided
#17In fifth grade I had a math teacher that would actually staple a McDonalds application to your test if you failed. Thankfully she has since retired.
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#18He made me write with my right hand.
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#19made us make paper cranes for hall passes...20 years later i can still make a top notch crane
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#20I can't remember what I did but in first grade my teacher got mad at me and said "you wanna act like a baby? Fine come over here" . She made me sit in a corner on the floor and gave me two little toys to play with.
Image credits: PinkSquidBear
#21I broke up with my boyfriend the night before my final and as I was walking to class to take it, my teacher seeing me, told me that I could take it the following day with his afternoon class without me even saying a word. He was a really great teacher!
Image credits: sangresangria13
#22one time i ran into my fourth grade english teacher on the subway and she went on and on to my mom and i about how good of a writer she thought i was. really inspired me to be the writer i am today.
Image credits: anon
#23Told me to stop dating my boyfriend when we were 13 because “It’s not like you’re gonna marry him”. We stayed together and got married.
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#24Told me I was smart and could succeed. I had spent the past couple years at a private school, trying so hard to prove myself. Despite doing well academically, I didn’t fit their cookie cutter mold, so I was looked down on by other students and administration. When I told the guidance counselor that I wanted to be premed and go to medical school after college, she pretty much told to lower my expectations because I wouldn’t succeed. At the end of my college math class my senior year of high school, I ended up in my professors office to look at what I had missed on my final. He told me that I had done well, and that I could my PhD in math if I wanted. That was not what I wanted to do, but when I told him I wanted to be premed, he looked at me and said you’re going to well in that. I know you will succeed. 6 years later and I’m halfway through my second year of medical school, and his words still ring in my mind.
Image credits: emmaline_grace97
#25My High School English teacher helped me get an IEP for my dyslexia. Yes I found many coping skills but still had trouble.. She also also helped me in so many more ways like had me take a paper to the office every day just to give me a 2 minute break. Would ask me if I knew all the words for the matching on my spelling tests. Got me a comic book of the book we were reading in class to help me. She would proof read my papers before they were due even for other classes. Most of all she helped me with all my paper work for my rank of eagle scout and talked me in to going to college because I could go for free. Because of her I have 2 degrees and earned my rank of Eagle scout. I owe the world to this teacher.
Image credits: bigkmedic12
#26My 9th grade English teacher asked me if I could write a creepy short story. I did it, gave it to her, then she retyped the first page and submitted it to her teacher in her Master's program. I found out about it because when I asked her what she thought of it, she said "oh, it got an A." I said "what do you mean? You graded it?" She said, "no, look." And she handed it back to me with her name on it as author and an A on it. I said, "You turned it into your teacher as if it were you own work?" A friend of hers was sitting in the classroom too, and this look passed between them that said, "She knows about plagiarism."
Before that, she had been my favorite teacher. She lost all my respect that day.
Image credits: LadyOnogaro
#27I was having a crisis of faith.
My philosophy teacher was an ex priest who left the church because it was riddled with issues and he didn't believe. He was open about his hatred for organized religion.
He had a chat with me in his office and worked me through my feelings and concerns and questions without ever trying to convince me what to think.
That moment taught me how to treat everyone I interact with. How to respect, help and respond to someone even though my beliefs didn't match because it doesn't matter.
Helping or comforting someone requires you to get on their level, you don't make them fit to your mindset.
Image credits: fuckit517826371
#28Got fired for setting up an illegal Guatemalan cattle market in the school basement.
Image credits: thermonuclearmuskrat
#29In 1st grade I struggled really hard with reading, I was very far behind where I was expected to be comparatively. I wanted desperately to read this book series called the magic tree house because...magic. She told me I needed to read some easier books at the time and assigned me 3 frog and toad books to read completely through, when I would finish the book I had to tell her what happened and I got to start the next one. Each book took me weeks to get through but eventually I finished all 3. Finally, I got to read the magic tree house books and by the end of the year I had read through book 5 and was incredibly proud of myself.
A week into summer vacation our door bell rings, I get called to the door and to my surprise my teacher is standing at the front door. She said she stopped by to tell me that she was incredibly proud of the progress I made with reading. She then presented me with a gift, she had bought me the 6th book in the series! I was incredibly happy and excited to continue the journey I started.
This simple act of kindness sparked a lifelong love of reading that I have passed on to my own son through the same series and it is something that I will forever appreciate and never ever forget.
Image credits: InSaiyanRogue
#30I had just gotten out of an emotionally abusive relationship around 16 and was worried about my ex hurting herself (abuse really f***s up your mind), so I confided in my English teacher. He listened to what I had to say and express, then secretly got in touch with my parents, school administration, and her school's administration to make sure we were both ok. My parents told me about this about a year after graduation. I was really taken back by the fact that he did all of that to make sure we were ok.
I'm Facebook friends with the teacher and want to buy him a beer once COVID is under control.
Image credits: TheMerk10
#31Grade 4, Mrs.Campbell.
It was at the end of the year, graduation, she gifted each child a book in the class. I think she did it out of pocket. So it was like Christmas for all of us, getting a gift. Most of the kids weren't into it ("books, ugh, lame, ect") but for me, it was a life changing moment.
While everyone else got a cool piece of paperback fiction, I got a big, hardcover, art-book-looking, beast of a book with a dragon on the cover that consumed me for years to come.
You see, my childhood was... unusual. My father passed when I was young. My mom was a like, punk-rock, artist, criminal, and we moved at least once a year. I attended more schools than years of school by several.
But that book, it became an anchor and constant source of joy. You see, it wasn't just some art book. While it's nearly 300 pages were, in fact, filled with amazing art. All the art was captioned. Paragraphs of text. It described events, people, places. Maps, diagrams of cites and pictures of massive battles. All captioned. It contained a whole universe of stories, the history of a world not our own laid out *like non fiction*. It opened my eyes to so much wonder that there is no way I would be the same person I am now without its influence.
That book was called "The Tolkien Illustrated Encyclopedia"
Looking back on it all. She must have seen something in me, because that book really showed a favoritism at the time. The trade paperbacks the rest of the class got were probably about as expensive combined as the book I was gifted.
Love you Mrs Campbell. Thank you, wherever you may be.
Image credits: Knytemare44
#32I was bullied a lot. So I wasn't the type of girl to smile a lot. He told me I should smile more. Every time I would walk into school he'd just say my name and "Smile!!!"
I know this sounds stupid. But the way he said it. It wasn't out of compassion or being helpful. It had this mean undertone to it.
I still have a case of resting b***h face. Everytime a person tells me to smile I just feel this pit in my stomach.
Image credits: Suihime
#33Mr. Lyons was my English teacher for all 4 years of high school. My Freshman and Sophomore years he worked along side another English teacher in my school’s Independent Study (IS) program. I met him in that program as a deeply depressed and suicidal 13 year old who was given the option to enter IS, or be put in juvi, as a criminal, for truancy (I had stopped going to school).
Anyways, he saw me go from IS, a semester behind in credits (meaning I was in class of 2013, instead of the class I entered with, 2012), and that very low mental state to entering the regular high school again my Junior year. I was set to graduate on time (I had essentially done 1 1/2 school years worth of work in 1 year). I was in his regular classroom that year and Senior year.
The end of Senior year came, along with cap and gown purchases, yearbooks, and recognitions such as scholarships, honor roll, etc. I had found out that I made the Principal’s Honor roll due to my GPA which meant I’d be graduating with Honors. Knowing I had Mr. Lyons’ class later in the day, I took my yearbook and slipped that notification paper in the back where I planned to ask Mr. Lyons to sign.
Come class time, I approached him and asked him if he could sign my yearbook. He gladly accepted and opened to the back where I had had the notification paper. He saw it, stared at it for a minute and his eyes welled up with tears. He looked up at me and said, “I knew all you needed was someone who wasn’t going to give up on you”. He smiled, asked if he could give me a hug, then signed my yearbook. He wrote, “What I said when I embarrassed us both in class. I’m so proud of you. I know you’ll do great things. You will be missed. Take care, Mr. Lyons”.
Definitely a moment I’ll never forget. At times, I still use the memory of it to motivate myself.
Image credits: geeangidk
#34This teacher was extremely strict HATED by my class, but loved me because I was one of the few who respected her and did well in her class.
When school ended, she gave me a crystal bear. Nothing too fancy or expensive, but I felt as if I was glowing leaving that classroom with bear in my hand. I still have it and will treasure it forever.
#35He knew my homelife wasnt the best. He saw a bright kid but someone who struggled with just...ya know. Following orders
He wrote home as I was Failing and spoke more kindly about me than most had ever done. It was very nice
Image credits: anon
#36Had the police come to the school because he had “reason to believe” I was smoking cigarettes and using drugs in 7th grade. No... both of my parents smoked in the house. I didn’t even know I smelled like cigarettes until the police told me why they were searching my backpack, desk and locker.
Image credits: sol-for-soul
#37I had a teacher give me a “man up” talk by phrasing it as: “life is the cruelest teacher because first she gives the test and then the lesson”. One of the most important lessons of my life from a freaking trigonometry class.
Image credits: NetiPotter72
#38My band teacher drove me home several times after the 7pm Jazz Band practice. My Dad was supposed to pick me up, but several times he fell asleep and didn't answer the phone when I tried to call.
Image credits: JonesNate
#39Three things come to mind that are connected. The first is a bad thing I’ll never forget.
7th grade English teacher tells me next year I should go into the lowest level English class (was currently in the highest and it has always been my favorite/strongest subject). I was getting Bs in his class.
9th grade English teacher told me I should keep writing and never give up (was kinda giving up cause of 7th grade teacher)
Senior year English teacher gives me English award in front of entire school where 7th grade English teacher was in attendance to see his son get an award for the track team.
Image credits: laurenodonnellf
#40When I was in kindergarten the assistant teacher told everyone that if you were bad your heart would stop beating and you would die. If she sees you acting up she would grab her chest and point at you making a mean face. I'm 43 now am I still remember that, but I can't remember her name.
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#41She kicked me out of class because she told me and two other students to put our desks in a circle and I replied that three desks make a triangle, not a circle.
Image credits: anon
#42Not me, my brother:
He had one of those haircuts that was popular in the mid nineties where you have long fringe (maybe 5"), but skinhead the rest. He was a skateboarder.
Anyway, the wood shop teacher decided that the haircut was an health and safety hazard and swiftly cut his hair in front of the whole class meanwhile berating him "kids today" etc. etc.
My brother was 12 and came home from school crying. My father was less than pleased, and apparently went up to school and made a right kerfuffle - as he should. My mother was very embarrassed by it all. I'll never forget.
Image credits: DarkPasta
#43I have always loved learning and loved going to school. I was a good kid and never really got into trouble. One year my parents got called in for a parent-teacher conference. One by one, each of my teachers told my parents that I acted out during class, was a distraction, etc. This came as a surprise to my parents as I had never gotten in trouble, and my grades were always good. Finally, the conversation got to my history teacher and my science teacher. They were speechless. My history teacher told my parents that he wished he had a classroom full of students with a passion for learning like me and that if the other teachers put in as much effort into teaching as I did into learning, then there would not be an issue. My science teacher agreed and apologized for wasting my parent's time. The rest of the school year was interesting. I could tell there was tension between certain groups of my teachers. My history teacher would later become the principal of that school, and I could not think of anyone more deserving of that role.
Image credits: Pod6ResearchAsst
#44In my senior year, my english teacher asked me if i was manic depressive after turning in a personal essay, only for me to get diagnosed with bipolar disorder a week later
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#45My teacher told me she was proud of me and that i have my own opinions and that she hopes i succeed in the future.
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#46She took every phone call no matter the time of night while I was in rehab. If it wasn’t for her being there in my lowest time, I probably would not be here today.
Image credits: poppa_smurf_killa
#47Freshman English teacher in college. He had a last name with 2 capital letters in it, so something like "McConnor". On the top of one of my first papers I wrote "Mcconnor" and he told me that I spelt his name incorrectly - Now obviously this confused me because the spelling was indeed correct and it took a few minutes of back and forth confusion before he told me what I did wrong, like a typical 18 year old I kind of just shrugged it off, like, "ehh who the f**k cares?". . .
His response was essentially, "If you don't care enough about your writing to get it correct, why the hell should somebody else care enough to read it?"
The response hit pretty close to home. Not initially of course because I was an 18 year old sh**head, but now, 15 years later, I still think about it from time to time and it does force me to put more effort into many of the things that I do.
Image credits: egnards
#48When I was in third grade the teacher of my gifted program class (extra class we were pulled from mainstream to do a few hours a week) started berating me over raising my hand too quickly to answer questions saying I needed to think longer and give others the chance to answer. She went on and on about how I had an attitude. I got upset and she made me stand in front of the class when I started to cry. “I know you’re crying and I don’t care”. It was my birthday.
It was a class of about 8 students. One guy told me in high school that that day was one of his clearest memories from elementary school.
#49During the time we had online lessons. My history teacher I went to Belgium with together with a group of other WW1 enthusiasts about a year ago, helped me massively during quarantine the past few months! I talked to him in a separate Google Meet about all the things that were going on with me and my family! He said after that talk: “Hang in there buddy” I saw that he cared for me and wanted to look out for me! Now that we have classes again at school, he asked me if i want to grab a coffee with him someday and walk in the park with him together with his 2 yr okd daughter! Probably soon! Furthermore, everytime we have History class, he looks to me whenever he explains about anything! And at the end of every lesson he says: “Take care, buddy!”
(btw, i have a furious passion for history that he is aware of and i always can laugh and chill with him in class and have good convo’s)
#50He was AWESOME. Helped me out with my confidence in building stuff in wood shop, welding, metals, and when I was the TEACHERS ASSISTANT for all those classes too. He was my favorite teacher. ??mad respect for Mr. M??
#51In high school one of my teachers had this duck-bill whistle (literally shaped like a duck's bill and it made a quacking noise). She used it to get the class' attention. One time I guess we were being extra rowdy and she blew the everloving s**t out of it and the class went stone-dead quiet. She got this shocked look on her face, and then took her hair pin out and dropped it and the whole class heard it hit the ground and she got this big grin on her face and we all just busted out laughing.
Grade 3, I said "AW, C**P!" when I got tagged out, rounding second, during a game of soccer baseball (canadian term for kickball). A little girl covering the base screamed "TEACHER!!!!!!! NEGOTIATIONFAIR SAID THE C WORD!"..... so i got put on detention and yelled at for the rest of the day until i finally snapped on my teacher at the end of the day and said "listen teacher, I don't get it, all I said was "aw, c**p" when she caught the ball and i didn't even know that that was a swear word!" The teacher replied "oh, I'm so sorry, i thought you said the OTHER "C" word"....
I said "what is the other c word?"
She said "ask your mother".
At the end of the day i got into the van and told my mom what happened. She broke out laughing her a*s off and explained to me, when i asked, that the word the teacher thought i had said was "c**t"...
I went to school the next day and said to all my friends
"Hey guys, guess what word i just learned".
Image credits: anon
#53They believed in me. They gave a f**k about me. Instead of telling me shut up for talking in class they ask me to explain how i did problems to them. They thank me for asking question. They treated me like an equal and not like child. They trusted me. Most teacher can’t do this for every kid, there isn’t enough time in day. Those teacher that went the extra mile for me change my life. I nearly failed 1st grade, I was 1 suspension away from expulsion in 6 grade, I had a 1.5 gpa my freshman year, I cheated on everything in high school. I finished my last two years with 4.0 gpa. The one class I never cheated In was human anatomy Mr Martinez inspired me to learn and treat me like an equal. I went through a tough first few year in college was 2.9 gpa student. This year I met a teacher who gave the same feeling as Mr. Martinez. She teaches chem 2 at my uni I failed her class last year with a 53% this year I made my mission that I would pass her class with an A. I went to every office hours, did every lecture problem three time, and got tutoring. I made it my mission for her to know my name in class of 75. Today is the first time I am not worried about a final. I have a 96% in a class that most people consider the hardest in college. I AM PROUD OF MYSELF AND MY ACHIEVEMENTS, but I couldn’t have done it with out her. She picked me up when I was down she gave me advice that you can’t put a price on, she is the prime example of the greater teacher ever.
#54A professor of mine took me and a friend on vacation twice to the Virgin Islands. It was f*****g magical. Then there was a boat load of rumors he and I were sleeping together and I cut ties. I regret that immensely.
#55It was in my high school. My chemistry teacher. I was a bright student especially in chemistry. When my grades went down, my parents only bashed me whereas my sir understood it was due to my mental health issues and literally talked to me and calmed me down. It felt so good. I felt like somebody legit cared and understood me then. My family only cared about my grades obviously!
#56Mrs. Leah in 8th grade. She caught me drawing in class, which made me start working on my math assignments again. I finished with about 20 minutes of class left and since the homework for my other classes was already done guess what I did. Yep, started drawing. She saw me and didn't even give me a chance to explain she just took my notebook. She gave it back the next day and the drawing I was working on was gone. She threw it away. I was so proud of that one too, which at the time didn't happen often.
#57My reception teacher think kindergarten age (for non Brits) asked my mum if she could adopt me she was so sweet, my mum obviously said no but her husband also asked a few months later after visiting the class. She now has a son and I am happy for her I think she works as a Headmistress now She was brilliant and so nice to everyone.
#58This isn’t a feel good story.
I was in the 8th grade and I was passing a note in the hallway to another student. The teacher intercepted it. I got worried, but also a little hopeful? The note discussed the abuse I dealt with at home. My alcoholic dad, my crazy mom. How the drinking led to hitting me, the hours of emotional abuse I dealt with every day while my dad drunkenly berated me because... that’s just what he did...
She read it, the whole note. And I guess she felt like the recipient (another 8th grader) should have received it in lieu of her intercepting what she thought was a note about “which teen heartthrob was your fav?” She gave it to him and said “I intercepted this, and it was meant for you.” And handed it to him.
I wrote that note wanting to feel heard. She took that note and I felt worried, then hopeful I might find help in her inception. When she gave it back to him, she never spoke of its contents ever again. It was then that I felt defeat. She had diary-esque accounts of my life at home and she did...nothing.
Good, bad, or ugly I learned that I was on my own.
#59There was the pretty old economy teacher who always talked about his fishing trips, who gave me an extra point for drawing a dead Kennedys logo on my test.
And the art teacher who was literally always pregnant (and still is according to my friends who still go to that school)
6th Grade - Math Teacher:
At the end of the year students were allowed to take a test to see if they could get into an advanced math class. I wasn't going to take the test because I didn't think I was good at math. (I was getting a B but due to family pressure this didn't feel like a good grade to me at the time) my teacher was surprised to find I didn't sign up since I was one of those teachers pet, in the front row, actually cares about school kids. She talked me into signing up and not only now am I still taking advanced classes in high school but it's also not just math anymore. I definitely wouldn't have done any of that had she not talked to me.
Oh and the second one - 8th grade, different math teacher.
There was a Math based competition and apparently getting out of 6th hour class wasn't enough of an incentive since only two people signed up so she told us she'd buy us a full size candy bar to anyone that signed up, didn't matter the score. 3 more people (myself included) signed up, a lot of students said that 'she was just trying to get people to sign up and she'd hope we'd forget' but she made good on her word. Even had us write down what candy we wanted.
She also helped me work through my fear of failure and talked to my parents about the pressure I seemed to put myself under.
TL;DR : 6th grade: Math teacher convince me to push myself and now I'm taking advanced classes
8th grade: Math teacher helped me start to get over my fear of failure which was good as I was on the brink of snapping.
#61Fifth grade. Teacher was shaking with anger because I put my math problems horizontally instead of vertically, or something really stupid like that. She snapped at me for not being able to follow “simple directions” and humiliated me. When she went to look at the paper of the boy next to me, he said, “i did it the same way.” She smiled fondly and said, “Oh, Robert” as if she was amused. B***h
#62Last year (9th grade) i was in a very good school, but then i decided to stop using ADD meds, and my grades dropped, most drasticly in math. From 100 in almost every test in 8th grade, to failing every test in math in 9th.
So a few days before the end of the year my math teacher called me, and said that to go to 4 units of math like i wanted i'd have to go to summer school and take a test, and i told him that i'm actually moving to a different school because i stopped taking my ADD, and he fully supported me and told me he was thinking its a good move. (I was very insecure about moving schools because my old school is one of these smart kids schools, and my new school isn't)
Thank you chen.
Image credits: DaAveragePoTaTo
#63Have a seemingly intense hatred of me and kick me out of his class permanently.
This was high school in 2003. I literally had to go to the guidance counselor and ask for a new teacher because I had been kicked out.
I think his hatred was rooted in jealousy. He was openly gay and always talking about how hard growing up/life was in general was as a gay man. Meanwhile I was a perfectly well adjusted openly gay kid enjoying life and having a great time. It was a pretty small town, but no one ever gave me any issues and I had plenty of friends, even a boyfriend I took to prom. I think he just absolutely hated that.
#64Wasn’t so much what she did to/for me as something she did with the entire class. 8th grade language arts class. She was a very cool person. Never looked at you with judgmental eyes. Treated everyone the same and with respect, and honestly, like equals to her.
Anyways, the one thing that sticks out more than any other was the very first day of school, she made us all listen to a song. Didn’t tell us why. Seemed kinda pointless and lame at the time. Last day of school, played us the same song. Can’t even describe how it felt. The school years always seemed to drag on and on. Could never wait for summer. But when she played the song at the end of the year, it kinda brought the whole year TOGETHER, and made it seemed like you had just walked in the door for the first time last week.
I wish I could remember what song it was.
Image credits: IXISeanIXI
#65The professor I had for my calculus 100 class in university was awesome. He was a good teacher and funny and engaging. If it was a first year class with over 100 people in it. I was just a face in a big crowd. I was on campus after hours a couple years after I graduated (they run programs for kids in the evenings and was dropping off my oldest) and I saw him. He stopped, looked at me hard, and said “
#66Called my handwriting a "chicken s**t." I was never the same again.
#67Challenged me, when I was going to choose a workbook I knew I could handle, she was like, no you take the harder one because I know you can do it. The fact that she believed, made me believe. That was a really important lesson in believing in and testing your self.
#68I have a negative and a positive-
negative is a jrotc teacher who made two lower-income students and I stand up in front of the class because we weren't donating to his stupid expensive chocolate fundraiser (one of them was 8 pieces for $10). This year he was trying to get us to sell crappy pizza. I'm leaving the program next year, just need my athletic credits.
Positive is a teacher who helped me get through a stress breakdown at my karate place. Thank you, Sempai.
Edit: I'm not a lower-income person, I wasn't selling the chocolate because I knew nobody I knew was going to buy it. One of my classmates who got called up wanted to sell stuff, but wasn't allowed.
#69In my 5th grade art class, we were drawing self-portraits. The teacher laughed in my face when I handed mine to her because she thought it was so bad.
Uhhm sorry, weren’t you supposed to teach me this?
#70My chem teacher ripped off my big toenail and it was one of the kindest things a teacher has done for me.
In 12th grade I was on a humanitarian (*coughcough* missions) trip with school to the Dominican Republic. My Chem teacher was one of the team leaders. While planting palm trees, I stubbed my foot on a pick axe, causing the toe nail on my big foot to come off halfway. There was a lot of blood but the nail was still hanging on there.
Fast forward a few days and I managed to stub my foot on the side of a bed, causing the nail to split from my nail bed even more. It was causing me so much pain that my chem teacher and I determined that the best thing would be for the whole toe nail to come off. He asked if I wanted to rip it off myself or if I wanted him to do it. I couldn’t stand the pain of doing it myself so I asked him to do it. I felt guilty for causing so much trouble (due to an upbringing that involved parental guilting when I got hurt) but he just seemed so unfazed by and good-humoured about the whole thing that it was a relief. I knew he was a passionate and funny teacher already, but his steadiness and kindness throughout my whole toenail saga made me appreciate him even more. He made the awkwardness funny (“This is the most I’ve ever touched a student’s feet”) and while I was embarrassed by my clumsiness and feeling bad about causing such a fuss, he never made me feel like it was an inconvenience or that he was anxious tending to my injury.
Later I found out from my younger brother that my teacher told the story of my toenail saga to his other classes. I also asked him to write a letter of recommendation for a scholarship, which I ended up winning. We found out on the night of my graduation and his enthusiasm for me getting the scholarship is one of my favourite moments of that occasion.
#71Teacher told my math class that she was glad that we were stupid so her daughter would have a better chance of getting a job later in life.
#72Mr Brishaum. I had migraines and couldnt handle the lights so was sent to the alternative school filled with drop outs and GED program students. He took me under his wing and understood I wasnt unwilling to learn i just couldnt take the lights. Put me in my own dark room with books and answered every question i had. He also took me out on personal field trips and took the time to be my guidance counselor to help me through hard times. I went from no hope to having all my credits my first trimester senior year. We went on a camping trip to celebrate and he gave me a custom set of cooking tools and a tent. Killed himself a week later. You will be missed sir, but not forgotten
#73When I was in middle school I was a scrawny dude that couldn't do one pull up. Every year we had to do pull ups for our exercise testing or w/e. So before I go up in front of the class my coach says "for every pull up you can do the Packers will win a game this year" (I'm a diehard fan and my coach was a vikings fan). Needless to say I couldn't do one so I was really disappointed. I decided to use that moment as motivation and started going to the gym. I had the same coach the following year and I reminded him of the comment he made the previous year. I knocked out 10+ pull ups and felt great about myself. If you're reading this Mr. Hanson I want to thank you for being a great coach (even though you're a dirty vikings fan).
#74My fifth grade teacher bullied me and encouraged other kids to bully me.
I was very interested in science and read obsessively, especially about astronomy. The subject came up in class. I raised my hand and shared a fact, except I had two nebulae confused and switched their names.
For some reason, that gave the teacher a green light to make fun of me for being wrong, and to encourage the other kids to mock me too.
They ironically nicknamed me “Einstein.” He participated in the name calling. The other kids taunted, bullied, and knocked me down on the playground. From that day forward, nothing I did at school was right. Everything was a reason to keep me in from recess writing hundreds of lines repetitively about whatever I had done wrong.
It changed me forever.
#75I would joke around quite a bit with my biology teacher, I loved to push boundaries and poke fun and he was a young teacher with a good sense of humor. Sometime in the year it became known that I have a fear of tape (the sound and feel of it is like nails on a chalkboard to me). I worked really hard in his class all year, it was not easy for me and I remember studying like mad for the final, which was timed down to the minute. So I’m scribbling away on the final when this guy walks up to me, stares me right in the eye and starts taping my left hand to the desk. I couldn’t stop writing, just kept giving him angry glances and gagging. He was a great guy, moments from his class still make me smile.
The mitochondria is the power house of the cell!