To the Teacher Who Started it All

May 13, 2019
Mrs. Inga Randle, a teacher with a creative heart who led me into education through her radiant influence.

To the Teacher that Started it All:

Yes, you! The shining star that sparked my love of learning! The one who led me to learn in fun and meaningful ways. Did you know that I became a teacher because of you? Did you know I grew to love learning because of you? Your influence is endless, even decades after I have left your classroom.

You were special. You noticed me. You appreciated me, quirks and all. You didn’t diminish my unique spirit. Instead, you celebrated it. That was different than any of the teachers before you. You provided a classroom environment that felt fun and safe. You let us explore. You let us experiment. You let us think we were in charge of our learning.

Most of my school memories have faded with the passing years. That is not the case with the experiences in your classroom. It was different in the best ways. I can still remember all of the hands-on learning experiences that you provided. After-all, I don’t think it’s easy to forget dissecting a shark, visiting your teacher’s farm, or “publishing” your first book at the age of 10.

I hope you realize your endless influence. I hope you know that we are still talking about you 20 years later. I hope you know that not every teacher is like you. You had heart. You had passion. You had patience. You had a room full of students and you made each one of us feel special, noticed, and cared for.

You made school interesting. You had an energy about you that pulled us in. Inside of that classroom I decided that I wanted to be just like you. I wanted to do what you were doing, making a difference. You led us to learn and grow. I can’t tell you a lot about the curriculum and state standards of that year, but I can undoubtedly tell you that we learned about community, respect, collaboration and leadership. You led by example and your light brightened the way for all of us.

Thank you for all that you gave us. I’m not sure we appreciated it as much then as we do now. As a kid, I’m not sure we were fully capable of comprehending your impact. We do now. You’re the type of teacher we loved. You’re the type of teacher we pray our children get. You’re the type of teacher we will always remember.

We will always remember your classroom. We will always remember the kind of teacher you are because you are truly one-of-a-kind. We are so grateful for your inspiring influence. Thank you for being more than just a teacher. Thank you for being a leader we appreciate and look up to, even decades later.

xox, Chels

HERE SHE IS, my favorite teacher of all-time, Mrs. Inga Randle! This post is dedicated to her, an amazing teacher and woman! May she always know her endless inspiration.
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3 comments so far.

3 responses to “To the Teacher Who Started it All”

  1. Elizabeth Powell Young says:

    She is the best!! I agree with everything you wrote. Inspiring and kind!

  2. Patty says:

    This is all so true! Love Inga!

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Chelsea Ohlemiller

Chelsea Ohlemiller

A thirty-something wife, mother and educator who has Indiana roots and a passionate spirit. Chelsea is a sappy romantic, coffee junkie, book collector, and person who wears her heart on her sleeve. She’s sarcastic, full of jokes, full of tears, and enjoys writing most when life gets messy or complicated. In 2017, Chelsea's mother passed away. Through her grief journey, she decided to take her mother’s advice and share her writing with the world. One day she gained the courage to honor her mother's wishes and write. It turned out to be one of the best decisions she's ever made.

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