Friday, March 07, 2008

Dear Carnegie...

Dear Carnegie,

It's been a wild three quarter-ride, guys. I can't tell you enough how unbelievably fast time flies, and how I'm going to miss hearing from all of you. From our fun “Post Secret” sessions, to our games of “Mafia”, to “sneaky-sneaky” moments with Miggy and company, Carnegie has been a whirling dervish for me, and I wouldn't have it any other way.

Carnegie is admittedly the toughest class I’ve ever run into. You have strong personalities and for the most part, know what you want, and will not let anything stop you as you go for what you want. Allow me to thank each and everyone of you through this humble letter of mine. This is the first and last year I’m teaching in Reedley, and I will forever treasure the memories of my students.

To Martin, thank you for being responsible and taking charge way beyond the call and duty. Your maturity is far beyond your years.

To Erika, thank you for your unique reactions in class. Though you’re often out or in the clinic, whenever you’re in, your reactions are so undeniably you. You make people feel that you are listening to them, which never fails to make them feel better.

To August, thank you for showing us what it means to be a “gentle giant”. In my high school, your look and type would automatically have become a bully, but here in Reedley, you have a heart. Hopefully, you will find the balance between heart and mind in due time.

To Amber, thank you for being a good sport whenever I confuse you with Lucy. You’re a smart girl in your own right, and I admire your tenacity when you want to achieve something. Never sell yourself short. You have the world in the palm of your hands, and it’s up to you to keep pushing yourself to excel.

To Michael, thank you for the Michael tests. You have the makings of a teacher, and if you ever do become one, Nobody would be prouder of it than I would. Your willingness to learn Philosophy in your spare time never fails to amaze me. There seems to be a potential teacher in every single class I have, and hey, in case it does come true, I called it first. I'm a mentalist, after all. ;)

To Tasha, thank you for knowing how to press on despite adversity. Thank you for never letting success get to your head. Everything you will achieve in the future, know that people are always right behind you cheering you on.

To Apex, thank you for the inane comments that never fail to make us laugh. Your bright personality always shines through, although you could stand to keep off the grass, if you know what I mean. ;)

To Hae Bin, thank you for being bubbly and fun in class. I especially find it amusing when you casually divulge secrets about your friends in class. Don’t ever lose your smile. It’s something that makes you unique.

To Hyeon, thank you for being one of the most hardworking students I’ve ever met. I know how difficult it is to you to be stuck in ESL despite being already better at English than most other students, but your resilience and determination is what makes you a strong person. Thanks for being the original Kim Tae Hyeon, too. =P

To Mara, thanks for the fun conversations we’ve shared. You’re really fun to speak to, and I can’t tell you enough how your stories never fail to make my day. You are wise beyond your years, and I don’t exaggerate when I say that you will go a long way when your time comes.

To Jonah, thanks for being the “cool dude” of the class. I find that your personality is a great contrast towards the firebrands of the class and it makes the dynamics all the more interesting.

To Mae, thanks for being very candid with how you think and feel. Your interviews allowed me to get a picture of you that I find very admirable. Also, I’m thankful we managed to move beyond that incident last year. Teachers seem to have a hard time identifying with students as genuine friends, but you’re one of the few students I'd be willing to call my friend at the end of the day.

To Louis, thank you for your excellent although offbeat ideas. You have a creative mind, and you really should channel your creative energies some more into everything you do. And thanks as well to you because of the existence of your Aunt Tina, for reasons we should never discuss anywhere ever again.

To Amber, I mean Lucy, thank you for being one of the most intelligent people I have ever met. I know that you work hard for everything you achieve, and I believe you have what it takes to really excel in this world. I’m also sorry about that incident during the interviews. Thank you for being a wonderful human being. Here's hoping you return to Korea carrying with you the things you learned from your stay in Reedley.

To Miggy, thank you for the sneaky-sneaky moments. I know I'm being way too lenient at times, but ironically, there’s something awfully “innocent” about the way you rattle off during those times.

To Justine, thank you for being a deep thinker. Even if you don’t let the class in on how you think, I see it through your writing. You need to break out of your shell some more, but I truly believe that you are a great person as is.

To Luigi, thank you for you and your barkada’s presence in the class. While admittedly, you give us teachers a tough challenge, deep down, we still see that you are a good person, and that’s why you’re here in Reedley.

To Regina, thank you for not being in the same class as your twin. God knows I have enough trouble telling Elvin and Kevin apart when giving green slips. Seriously though, thank you for being able to speak up every now and then and showing us that there’s a lot of thought going into every word you say.

To Ito, thank you for that moment in your musical. I will never be able to unsee it, but your bravery is to be commended.

To Raf, thank you for showing me what it means to be a thinker beyond your years. You are an excellent debater, if only you learned to be more assertive. I admire the effort you made when you lost your speech during the first round.

And lastly, to David, thank you for your utmost confidence in yourself. I’m sure your classmates see it your way, too. ;)

As you read this letter, dear Carnegie, know that I will always be grateful to you. This has been a wonderful year for me, and I can never thank you enough for having made it special for me. I can only hope that in my own way, I have also been a positive influence in each and every one of you.

Few professions are nobler than being a teacher. I remember an old story from a teacher of mine, of why he chose to teach.

In his story, he told me that he believes someday, one of his students will become President of the Philippines. And when they meet again, no matter the position the student may find himself in, he will always refer to the teacher as “sir”.

I’m not one to say “goodbye”, dear Carnegie. So let me just say, thank you for the memories and I love you guys.


Mr. Fabie

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