I taught Catrice last year in Foundations 11. She sat with Lauren P. and those two were a great team. They would support each other with the difficult questions and - though they obviously enjoyed each other's company - they managed to strike the perfect balance between socializing and getting the work done. Nice job girls!
You know those puzzles that we do at the start of class? And you know the ones that consist of a series of random words that - when said together - form a "well-known" expression? Well, Catrice is killer at those. KILLER! If she is in your class, there is no point in even trying! I honestly don't know how she gets them so fast. Pure brilliance, I am sure.
Catrice's Foundations class was first block in the morning (at least, for half of the year). And, like many of us, she would often arrive looking "less-than-impressed" with the early start time. But Catrice is one of those people whose entire look changes when she smiles. It was quite a transformation to see this exhausted, slumped-on-her-desk person suddenly burst to life when she grinned. What a beautiful smile! What a beautiful person!
Although Catrice got a good mark in Foundations last year, it was not quite high enough for acceptance into her intended post-secondary program (nursing, right C.N.?). She came to me a few months ago and asked if there was something she could do to raise her mark. I told her that, if she was willing to join THIS year's class for a couple of months (and to work hard in class), I would give her the requisite marks.
I was SO impressed with how Catrice responded to this. She did not whine ("Can't you just be nice and GIVE me the marks?"), she did not complain ("But I don't WANT to lose my spare block!"), she did not negotiate with me ("can I just do a poster project?"). She actually thanked me for the opportunity and started attending class immediately... even though it was first block in the morning again!! (poor Catrice!!). I think her response to my offer says a lot about the sort of person Catrice is. Very, very impressive!
It's not surprising that Catrice was successful in raising her mark in this year's class. In fact, she is no longer attending class. Catrice's Foundations journey is complete! She is now ready to be accepted - and successful!! - in her post-secondary program. I wish you all the best Catrice. Thanks for being such a mature, friendly and honest student. Teaching you again this year (albeit for a short time) was a delightful surprise!