Mr. L. was my 10th grade English teacher. I'm sure he wouldn't remember me, but he had a lasting impression on my life. I was always a top student and prided myself on how smart I was. Mr. L. gave me my first "F." It was one of many in his class, but with each 'F' came the opportunity to earn back points by identifying my mistakes, correcting them and then explaining to him how I made each mistake and why my revisions were correct. This was a painful process for someone who had always sailed through school and most other things.
The interesting thing about Mr. L.'s 'F's' was that they were based on what he knew each individual could do... not the same standard for everyone. And while my work may have been perfectly good work by an objective standard, he knew it wasn't my best.
By the time I was done with Mr. L.'s class, I had learned to always do my best work, no matter what and even if I could get away with less. I received an 'A' in his class when all was said and done, and to this day, whenever I want to throw up my hands in frustration or take the easy way out of something...I think of Mr. L. and those 'F's.'
Submitted by Anonymous
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