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Written by Mallory Orr, AmeriCorps Member serving the Entergy Louisiana Team at Broadmoor Middle School

Friday was my last day with my sixth graders who have filled each day of the last ten months of my life with joy. While saying goodbye to my students was the hardest part of my City Year, I have found myself overwhelmed with gratitude for my time spent with them. I entered this year hoping to help my students learn and grow, but never knew how much they would teach me. My students filled our classroom time and interventions with their vibrant personalities and unique perspectives on the world. I want to take a moment to thank them for the lessons they taught me this year, and hope to encourage my fellow corps members to reflect on their year with gratitude as we end our year of service.

To DV, Your quiet determination is what enabled you to succeed, you taught me so much about patience and never giving up.

To TP, You amazed me every day with your curious nature, I am so grateful for the daily reminder to always ask questions.

To S, Your resilience was inspiring, thank you for teaching me that every obstacle is worth overcoming.

To J, I admire your imagination, you taught me to tap into my creativity and to see difficult situations with new perspective.

To TR, your silly personality brought me laughter, I appreciate you for reminding to find the humor in all life brings.

To JQ, your kindness brightened the days of all who know you, I’m grateful to you for showing me that any stranger can be made a friend.

To C, your dedication to working hard was a welcomed reminder that I need to give my best effort each day.

To TM, you were never afraid to take your time, you taught me that it’s okay not to race to the finish and to ask for help along the way.

To K, you seemed to be immune to stress, I thank you for calming my frustrations and reminding me to take a breath when things get tough.

To DA, you are filled with Joy, I’m so grateful that you shared your light with me.

While I will miss my students dearly, I am exiting this year with a heart full of gratitude. I’m sad that I won’t get to see them at school each day, but I know I will carry their lessons with me.

To all of my kids--I am so proud of you, thank you for sharing your lives with me.

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