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If You Really Knew Me

Sep 27, 2017, 10:53 AM

Katie Brown is the 2014 Washington State Teacher of the Year. Katie is an ELL Specialist and Instructional Coach. The following content is reposted from Katie’s blog as Teacher of the Year.

My students are such a source of inspiration for me. Each one of them so diverse, with a special story to tell, unique barriers to overcome, and dreams all their own.

Below is a piece I wrote for the OSPI From Seed to Apple publication. Each regional ToY writes a story from the classroom. A story from the heart. These stories are then shared with our state legislators to give them a glimpse into why we do what we do every day.

We teach kids.

If You Really Knew Me
Voices of Those Often Unheard

If you really knew me,  
You would know that I only slept for three hours last night.
I think the party ended at 4:00 AM?
I’m still here.

If you really knew me,
You would know that I was at the top of my class in China.
I was ready for college.
Will I graduate?

If you really knew me,
You would know that I can’t stay after school even though I need help.
My mom has to go to work. I am responsible.
My brother is only two:
Dinner, bath, bedtime.
I’m only eleven.

If you really knew me,
You would know that I am from El Salvador, not Mexico.
But you can keep calling me Mexican.
I won’t say anything.

If you really knew me,
You would know that my earbuds are blasting Marvin Gaye.
I’m a bit of a Romantic.
What do you think I’m listening to?

If you really knew me,  
You would know that I share a room with five other people.
Do I have a quiet space to do homework?
I’m not sure what you mean.

If you really knew me,  
You would know that my dad was deported last night.
I will stay strong for my mom.
I hope I see him again someday.

If you really knew me,
You would know that I want to succeed.
I can’t act like it. I can’t talk about it.
I hope you can see through me.

If you really knew me,  
You would know that I’m writing a novel.
When I seem to be in my own world, I am.
I created it.
You are welcome to visit any time.

If you really knew me,  
You would know that you are the most important adult in my life.
I won’t tell you that,
But I will eat lunch in your room again tomorrow.

If you really knew me,  
You would know that I am the first one in my family to go to college.
You keep telling me I can go if I choose.
You keep telling me I can go if I want.
You keep telling me.
Ok.

If you really knew me,
You would know that
My name is Angelica.
My name is Jin.
My name is Thanh.
My name is David.
My name is Jose.
My name is Eddie.
My name is Antonia.
My name is Mario.
My name is Katrina.
My name is Devin.
My name is Parjinder.

Read more inspirational stories from teachers HERE