Amanda Maxwell

Primary School,
Australian Capital Territory

I taught a child whose behaviour could be quite challenging, who could become at times withdrawn and reluctant to participate due to lack of confidence. Our first meeting was not a good one and it was the first of many difficult situations. I persevered and made a huge effort to get to know this little girl and what made her tick.

With time she was able to overcome her fears and lack of confidence and learn to trust me. In the time I taught her she showed drastic improvements both academically and behaviourally. She began to participate in classroom activities more freely and felt confident to tackle difficult tasks and generally opened up more. At the end of the 2 years she wrote me a heartfelt thank you poem, a lasting reminder of the impact we can have if we make students feel 'good enough'.

Twenty years on I found out that a Learning Support Assistant (LSA) from that school was in touch with her and I asked the LSA to pass on my well wishes. The girl wrote back and said I was the first teacher who really tried to understand her and made her feel like she mattered. She said I would always have a special place in her heart, and that when she has kids she will tell them about me.

Amanda Maxwell
Amanda Maxwell - Memento

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