Tuesday, June 10, 2014

An Open Letter to My HAL Students #MRPHAL

Dear students,

I tried to sum up the year in the last few minutes of the exam and I sounded like a moron. I had everything so well thought out and I just rambled and bumbled my way thorough an incoherent sting of sentences. So, I thought I would do what I do best and write a few thoughts.

Above everything else, I want to make sure you know that I am so very proud of everything you have accomplished this year. I'm not just talking about 20 Time or TEDx, I'm talking about everything you have done this year. You have grown as writers and thinkers in an educational setting, but you have also grown as individuals. One of the best parts of this job is watching young adults mature and take the next step in their lives. While you may have stumbled along the way, all of you picked yourself up, dusted yourself off, and were ready to take the next step. No matter what life threw at you, you were ready for the challenge. Never think you cannot do anything you want. All of you have the capacity for greatness, you just have to be willing to step up and show the world.

I also want to thank you for following me in this crazy adventure this year. I'm always trying something new and I am terrible at hiding my excitement for new things. You rolled with the punches, let me fall flat on my face, and made sure I stood back up. There were days when I didn't bring my "A" game and you were more understanding of that than I probably was when you did not have yours. For those that did not take to projects and some of my others lessons, thank you for playing along. You could have made the class difficult and fought me tooth and nail, but you tried and I hope you walked away with something from those projects. I also want to thank you for your honesty. I can only get better when I get honest feedback from you. I want class to be better for the next group of students that sit in your seats and you are the best people to help me do that. I want to thank you for your sassiness. I think a class without a little push back and sass is a boring class. You always brought that and those were my favorite times. Lastly, thank you for the memories. The long conversations, the squirrel shaped student declaration of independence, the struggle for "Dream Team" status, the lib dub battle, the ginger jokes, Jane Gallagher, symbols everywhere or nowhere, "not guilty" verdicts, Utopian societies, blog posts, and so much more will be remembered long after you leave this classroom and this school.

Finally, I want to say good luck. You are all so very talented in your own special ways. Some of you are still looking for those talents, but when you find them, you are going to blow people away with your awesomeness. My door is always open to you for anything you need to talk about and, most importantly, my charging station is always available when your batteries are low. Have a great Summer and I'll see you in the Fall. Until then...Allons-y!

Mr P

TEDxGrossePointeSouthHS Crew


  1. I'm INSPIRED by this blogpost, the TedGrossePointeSouth event and this picture! :)Thank you for learning out loud---Nick Provenzano and you amazing students, you! You sent outward a little bit of YOU, your passions and concerns and dreams, and that little bit of YOU empowers us out here in the world. If you'd kept that little bit of YOU inside your school/mind, well...let's not think about that. Thank you again!

  2. Great post, love your enthusiasm and passion. Always trying something new, having a go and pushing the boundaries is what we should all be doing as educators.


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