Teacher Appreciation Week Give-Away


My grandmother was a teacher. Her first job out of college was teaching in a rural, one-room schoolhouse. She had to get there early enough to get the fire going so the room would be warm when the students arrived. That was in her contract. She taught all subjects to students of different ages and academic levels  When she married, she lost her job because married women had a husband to take care of them and didn’t need to work. By the time I came along, she was teaching first grade in a normal elementary school. She was my first-grade teacher. She was tough and didn’t allow any tomfoolery in the classroom. She probably learned how to manage students back in that one-room schoolhouse because she had to. She couldn’t send them to the principal’s office because there wasn’t one.

My mom was a teacher. She taught high school physical education. The high school only had one sport for girls, basketball. She wanted girls to have a chance to play other sports, so she started a club after school. They played softball, volleyball, ping pong, and did gymnastics. When Title IX passed, the school had to either drop the boy’s baseball team or add a girl’s sport. My mom volunteered to coach a volleyball team even though she had never played in her life. She couldn’t have played because there were no sports for girls when she was growing up. She went on to have one of the winningest high school volleyball programs in Tennessee.

My aunt was a teacher and then went on to become a school counselor.

My cousin started out teaching elementary school and then became a principal.

Three of my nieces are teachers: one in elementary, one in middle, one in college.

When I was a kid, I was often asked if I was going to be a teacher when I grew up like my mom and grandmother. I said, “No way! Being a teacher is too hard.”  I knew the challenges teachers faced from students, parents, and the administration. The teachers in my family were dedicated and passionate. I knew that without that passion, I wouldn’t survive a semester. Teaching isn’t just a job, it’s a vocation.

To show my admiration and respect for teachers, I’m giving away a signed copy of There’s No Ham in Hamburgers: Facts and Folklore About Our Favorite Foods. To enter, comment on this post. Not a teacher yourself? Then nominate one of your favorite educators. The drawing will be held on 5/5 at 5pm.


  1. Rita Hackler on May 3, 2021 at 4:39 pm

    What a great tribute to teachers and your family!

  2. Lori Collins on May 3, 2021 at 8:42 pm

    Thank you, Kim! Great tribute.

  3. Katelyn Shetterly on May 3, 2021 at 8:54 pm

    I feel a connection to your grandmother! I teach kindergarten in a small, rural school! You are right! It is too hard, but the reward out weighs the demand! I love teaching little people to read!

    • Sharon Van Rensselaer on May 4, 2021 at 3:52 pm

      I knew that family too and benefited by having your grandmother as my first grade teacher and your Mother as my PE teacher. I belonged to that after school program. You and I come from strong roots and I have always been proud of their accomplishments. I have marveled at that home room school teacher who set her goals to go to college when it was not encouraged in her area and in some cases frankly not allowed. She did so for the privilege of teaching under such hard conditions. Wow!

      Now, I am equally proud of our published author. You fall into the members of my family that I admire, respect and brag about too much.

      Thank you for acknowledging Teachers Appreciation Day

  4. Anna Schaller on May 4, 2021 at 1:32 pm

    So much history in that little testimonial-my how we have come a long way!

  5. Lindsay Dungan on May 4, 2021 at 9:55 pm

    What an interesting title! I can’t wait to read it.

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