Love Letters to Our Educators

NOVEMBER 19, 2020

As we honor the yearly ritual of giving thanks this month, each member of the iCivics Curriculum team has written a message for teachers. 

We know how absolutely exhausting this year has been for teachers, as both human beings and as professionals, and we want to say thank you. We hope that you are able to take some time to read them and feel the warmth of our gratitude. 

Please know that the iCivics team is perpetually committed to serving educators—some of the hardest-working and most undervalued professionals in our country. We see you, and we appreciate you.


Every time I think things can’t get more complicated for teachers, the universe laughs and says, “Hold my dry-erase marker.” I continue to be in awe of your perseverance, dedication to your students, and willingness to adapt. It’s easy to get used to the new abnormal, but you are surviving a pandemic, through a contentious election season, and doing so with the heart of a teacher. I see you, we see you. Keep it up and know that you are making a difference. Every single day.

—Carrie Ray-Hill, Senior Director of Digital Learning

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This season has been full of uncertainties, anxieties, fears, and sorrow. And there have been bright spots and silver linings, too—let’s not overlook that. At iCivics, you are our bright spot! Through everything 2020 has thrown our way, you’ve exercised your resiliency. You’ve been ever present for your students and ever dedicated to your craft, not to mention while juggling the weird array of new family, friend, and community normals the pandemic has thrown our way. You’re standing...and TALL, might I add. Remember that. And because you’re standing, our next generation of citizens are too. That is a debt we can never repay. 

Love, light, and blessings, 
—Taylor Davis, Director of Curriculum

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Over the past eight months, you have navigated unprecedented challenges and I continue to be impressed by your resilience, your ingenuity, your passion, and your strength. Both as a parent and as a member of the iCivics team, I am so grateful for the work you have done and continue to do. It’s hard to put into word the amount of gratitude I feel. So I’ll just say: THANKS & GRACIAS. I’d also like to give a special shout out to the teachers of ELLs in the Educator Network who responded to my questions so thoughtfully and provided great suggestions in support of our mission to reach all students. We couldn’t do what we do without YOU. 

Signing off with virtual hugs!
—Kristen Chapron, Senior Editor, Digital Learning and ELL

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It’s true that teachers don’t always get the thanks they deserve. In this crazy time we’re living in, that especially seems to be the case. So I just want to say to all the educators out there: I see you. I see your dedication. I see your resiliency. I see your resourcefulness, and your unwavering devotion to your students. And even though you may not see it, hear it, or feel it right now, I want to remind you that you are impacting lives, you are making a difference, and for so many kids, you are their rock—giving them someone and something to look forward to, and helping them get through one more day. There really aren’t words to show my appreciation for everything you’re doing, so a simple but heart-felt thank you will have to suffice.

Thank you.

Stay strong. Stay healthy. And try to find a way to laugh, every single day!
—Lora De Salvo, Curriculum Associate

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It's not enough to describe this year as "unprecedented." It has been so much more than that, and your job put you smack in the middle of it all. iCivics has been watching and working as you caught the innumerable curveballs of 2020. I have seen your effort, and I have witnessed your greatness: the strength in your endless lesson planning, the grace in your adaptability to every classroom type, and the inspiration in your commitment to your students above all else. From someone who knows, one good teacher can make all the difference in the life of a student. As I look at the greatness of your work this year, I am filled with hope and gratitude that you are there to make that difference for so many students. All I can say is thank you, so I promise to say it often. 

Thank you!

—Molly Launceford, Curriculum Assistant

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As a recent graduate, I know that I owe everything to my teachers. I can say with certainty that your classrooms -- unusual as they are this year -- are filled with students who feel the same. To those of you teaching for the first time this year, I admire your fearlessness and perseverance. To veteran educators: I am in awe of your infinite reserves of energy and the way you inspire all of us to positively impact our communities. Thank you all for being role models for students like me, both in school and in life. You are our heroes and legends, and we owe you more than we could possibly articulate.

With warm regards,
—Sheila Panyam, Curriculum Intern

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I'm always in awe of you! We know how exhausting it can be to stand collected and confident before a classroom, day after day, no matter the circumstances. Now, as we navigate 2020 (and all that entails), I almost tear up thinking of your bravery and composure. Please never forget the difference you're making for each of your students! You bring us all hope for the rising generation. I'm a college student now, reflecting on gratitude for all my teachers, back to my K-5 educators, who changed my life in ways I couldn't begin to articulate at the time. Everything you do means so much. THANK YOU!

—Zoe Nuechterlein, Junior Curriculum Assistant