In Dead Poets Society, Robin Williams plays English teacher John Keating, who inspires his students through his teaching of poetry. When Keating has to leave the school and venture elsewhere, his students show him their appreciation for how they have changed each of their lives by standing on their desks—something which Keating had once asked them to do in order to teach them how to look at the world in a different way—and exclaiming, “O Captain! My Captain!” in salute to him. A gesture which leaves Keating visibly touched.
5 October is World Teachers’ Day, and to commemorate this event, we have prepared this list of ways you can thank the teachers who have touched your heart in their own special ways and inspired you to raise yourselves to be the best you can be. Think of the teachers you had in the past or have right now who you feel have made an impact in your life and see how you could let them know how much you appreciate what they have done for you as a person.
1. Write a ‘Thank You’ note
Send your teacher a nice greeting card or, better yet, a heartfelt handwritten note telling them how much you value what they’ve done for you. You could also hand this over to them yourself.
2. Give them a simple gift
Better if it’s something they can really use. A nice mug or a bookshop or supplies store gift card will surely be appreciated by most teachers. Or you could go for something they personally love. If your teacher has a fascination with horses, for example, you could gift her with a horse figurine or a small purse with a horse patch.
3. Tell others about how they inspired you
Post about it on Facebook or any of your other social networking accounts. Tell the world about the important impact your teacher has had on you. You can also recommend him to other potential students and offer to act as a student reference for him if he needs feedback for promotions, awards, etc.
4. Thank them in person
You could go with the simple approach of going up to your teacher and saying a quick and warm thank you. Ask them if you could have a chat with them for a few minutes before or after class, and express to them in person your gratitude for the things they have done for you.
5. Do well with your life
It’s a popular notion that teaching is a labour of love. And there is no greater feeling for teachers than the pride and joy they feel when they see their students doing very well—from getting good grades in class to graduating with honours and getting into a prominent university to earning plenty of success in your chosen career. So, if you are doing well now as a doctor, as a lawyer or as a successful network marketing professional, and you are reminded of a teacher from your past that inspired you to take the right path to it, let them know about it. Dedicate your work in part to the teacher who helped you to get where you are at that moment. They would surely feel great love from that.