For my final blog post of my CW career, I’m supposed to be writing a testimonial to bring all you crazy blog-readers who are not already convinced of the value of CW over from the dark side. Obviously, there’s not enough space in one post to give a full brief, so I’m going to have to choose just one aspect of CW to talk about: Heather.
Today, I went into Heather’s office to consult with her about a poem (the one I’m writing for graduation) for the last time. This felt more final than any of the other events of the day—more so than attending my last high school English class or bringing my cap and gown home or even being part of the “senior appreciation circle.” I have the impulse to frame my enthusiastically-scribbled-on poem and hang it on my dorm room wall.
Working with Heather has been a defining part of every senior’s time in CW. “Working with Heather” may have included any of the following and more: sleeping on her couch; calling her at all hours of the night; eating her food; being showered with ego-boosting compliments; sometimes, grading her papers. Perhaps most importantly, hearing her explain something about your poem—some clever syntactical choice or meaningful image—that you hadn’t even consciously considered. Any CW knows how pissed off I get at apathetic teachers. Heather is the opposite of apathetic, and her complete generosity with her time, energy, and love is unearthly. She wins the Nobel prize for life-changing teaching.
Prospective parents reading this? If you think your kid can find a teacher like this at any school, you are wrong. Prospective CWs? If you have ever felt like you didn’t fit in, or like nobody understood you, the chances are that Heather will be able to fix that. Along with teaching us to write, it’s what she does.