Class: Reading I
Grade: High School
Subject: English Language Arts
School/Institution: Snyder High School Snyder, TX
I am a first-year teacher. I decided to pursue a teaching career at the age of 40. I was given 3 classrooms of freshmen who struggle with reading. Upon reviewing the option for reading selections, I chose “The 5 People You Meet in Heaven. I was not sure how students would respond to the story itself. But after the first chapter, all 65 of my Reading students had become more engaged in your book, than anything else we have done since. When we would complete the daily readings, they would literally be upset that I stopped reading for the day. They simply wanted more. When we had other assignments to complete, they always wanted to learn more about Eddie. They smiled as Eddie saw Marguerite, they cried as Eddie learned the fifth lesson from Tala. They were so engaged. It made my class a joy to teach.
As much of a long shot as it may be, I would be remiss if I didn’t ask for you to possibly have the generosity to come to Snyder, Texas, and possibly visit, with not only my students but other students in the school. I personally teach Tutorials, Reading and Speech and Debate. We have a thriving Theatre program that I am sure would love to simply talk. If you are able and willing, please let me know. We would be more than thrilled. Thank you for all you have done in the world of literature.
What a great story about your classes – I totally love the fact that you got into teaching at 40 years old!! Good for you!! For me as a 31 year veteran, that story in itself, warms my heart! Also to see what you did to connect to your students – AMAZING! I have been using Tuesdays With Morrie in my classes since the movie came out in the mid to late 1990’s and that book has been a staple in my Principles of Leadership class. The 5 People You Meet In Heaven has been read by countless students and shared with our classes as part of their final exam “book report” presentation.
I have shared Mitch’s other books, his articles, his videos, etc., for so many years with my classes – mostly as weekly Blog assignments. You have helped inspire me to keep working hard for my students and basketball players that I coach as well. Thank you for sharing this!