A lot of you may not be aware of this but Raveel is a very (VERY!) good Math student (actually, so is the other person in the photo above!). When I hear students talking (with awe in their voices) about who the very top Math students are in our school, I almost never hear Raveel's name mentioned. But this guy is an incredibly capable student. There are two things I like best about Raveel (as a math student):
- he continually asks "why"? Why does it work this way? Why is that the formula we use? Can you prove it to me that this method always works? [Incidentally, there have been more than a couple of times when Raveel has asked me questions that lead me to say (in my head) "uh-oh!". He has asked some really great questions that I have never considered before. So it's a little scary for me (but also exciting) when he asks such a question and we have to figure out the answer together.]
- he draws connections between things we are learning now and things we have already covered. That's only possible when you REALLY understand something.
Besides being an excellent student, Raveel is also a great guy. He needed to learn a new skill this year (for Duke of Ed, I think) and I agreed to teach him the game of cribbage. He came after school a few times and we played against each other. Raveel, like myself, is really laid back and relaxed. Just the sort of person I like hanging out with. It was lots of fun to spend some non-teaching time him!
One of the nicest things that happened to me the past couple of years was when Raveel's sister (unbeknownst to Raveel) wrote me an email complimenting me on my teaching style (she is in the process of becoming a teacher herself... I think). So apparently it's not just Raveel (who must have said some nice things about me to his sis ) - it's his whole family that is kind and thoughtful!
Good luck to you Raveel! I know that you are going to do great at university... and beyond! Thanks for all the insightful questions you asked and the kindness you showed me over the years. I will remember you fondly as one of the most gifted math students I ever had the pleasure to teach... and (more importantly) also as a very special person!