A letter from a teacher to her sixth-year students is going viral on Facebook and other social media platforms for all the right reasons. Instead of showing a teacher who has been secretly recorded doing something awful, the viral letter records a teacher named Mrs. Thom doing something great. In preparation for her students upcoming Standard Assessment Tests (SATs), the teacher advised her students to perform as many of the following stress-free activities as possible.
On the Twitter page of the Bucklebury Church of England Primary School, which is located in Reading, Berkshire, the school has responded to the viral nature of the letter. The beginning of the letter, which is titled “J3 Homework for Monday 9th May,” appears as if the teacher is about to offer several serious assignments for her students to complete that weekend, but upon reading the items on the list, the students realize they are in for a fun weekend instead.
“We are now in the last couple of days before the SATs and it is vital that you use your time this weekend wisely. This is your homework for this weekend. Please complete as many of these activities as possible and tick to say that they have been done.
“Go on a bike/scooter ride.
“Read a book.
“Watch your favorite TV program.
“Eat Haribo or ice cream.
“Spend time with people you love.
“Laugh until your tummy hurts.
“Go outside and enjoy the weather.
“Go for a swim or a walk.
“Spend time on your favorite hobby.
“Run until you just can’t anymore.
“Cook or make something.
“Have more Haribo or ice cream.
“Play in your garden.
“Do something you have never done before.
“If you feel you have to, you may revise, BUT you can only do this for a maximum of one hour total. REMEMBER — Mrs. Thom is in charge of worrying — you don’t need to. You are all amazing and I couldn’t be more proud of you.”
As expected, such a creative edict that wishes students a wonderful weekend is going viral on social media. When the letter that folks believe was originally written by Mrs. Thom, a Bucklebury Primary teacher, was shared on Facebook, the sharing grew into the thousands.
Before long, the teacher’s letter appeared in the trending section of the BBC website. When the letter was shared on the Facebook page of Eyfs Matters, the Early Years Foundation Stage, it gained more than 75,000 Facebook reactions, was shared more than 66,000 times on Facebook and gained more than 3,000 comments.
The reaction from the Bucklebury Church of England Primary School reveals that the school adopts the belief that all portions of a child’s well-being should be considered, including one’s mind, body, and soul.
Indeed, the school’s logo on Twitter reveals a wooden cross as the root of a flourishing green tree, and the above tweet shows the mind-mapping of the body, mind, and spirit connection.
The school is being celebrated for recognizing that “outcomes from tests at 11 [years of age] do not dictate who you are or who you might become,” which is a seriously refreshing message for students who could benefit from a respite from homework and test-prep overload.
The response from the school also notes that other factors beyond standardized tests are important for students to learn as well. Those factors include the ability to have a great conversation, to think and reflect, and examine life well beyond the confines of tests. Both the teacher and school are being praised for the message.
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