“Start each day with a grateful heart.”

Two psychologists, Dr. Robert A. Emmons of the University of California, Davis, and Dr. Michael E. McCullough of the University of Miami, have focused a great deal of research on gratitude. In one study, they asked all participants to write a few sentences each week, focusing on particular topics.

One group wrote about things they were grateful for that had occurred during the week. A second group wrote about daily irritations or things that had displeased them. The third wrote about events that had affected them (with no emphasis on them being positive or negative). After 10 weeks, those who wrote about gratitude were more optimistic and felt better about their lives. Surprisingly, they also exercised more and had fewer visits to physicians than those who focused on sources of aggravation.

Therefore, being grateful has proven to enhance your quality of life.

Many times, our families hear how much their children love the teachers at Barron Gymnastics. They listen as their 3-year old daughter or son exclaims how much they love “nastics”. Other parents have picked up their child’s essay from school to find that their child wrote how her gymnastics coach inspires them to face their fears. Some little ones may even “bring” their teacher in for show-and-tell by proudly presenting pictures of them with their teacher walking down the balance beam. As parents, you experience the gratitude that your children have for the teachers that work with them. I am here to tell you that it goes both ways. The teachers at Barron Gymnastics are so thankful for their students.

In the spirit of Thanksgiving, I asked the teachers to share why they are thankful for their students with me. I wanted to share these answers with you, as they are full of meaning and so concrete in their delivery. When I took the time to read them, I could almost picture the smiles on their faces as they typed them out to me. As I have written before, “This is why we do what we do.” Please share the following messages of thanksgiving with your children.

I am thankful for my students that take the time to help others. I am thankful for my students that take the time to say please and thank you. I am thankful for my students smiles and laughter, sometimes they don’t know how funny they can be. – Coach Brennan

I am thankful for my students always making my day better. No matter what is going on with my life outside the gym, I know I can come to work and my day will be better because of the students’ love and positivity. All of my students have a place in my heart. – Miss Chelsey

I am thankful for all of my students who come to gymnastics ready to give it their all & have so much fun while doing it! I love seeing them get excited when showing off a new skill!! …also am a sucker for the huggers. – Miss Kasja

I’m thankful for my students because they’re so cute, funny, and sweet. They say the funniest things and always make me smile. I’m also thankful for my students who try so hard to do well for me! Sometimes I’ll tell one of them to practice a skill at home and they’ll come to me the next week all excited and tell me they’ve been practicing and they’re so much better at it! I love how proud and excited they are to show off to me when they get a skill! – Miss Molly

I am thankful for my students because they make me look at life in a different perspective. Seeing everything new through their eyes is so inspiring to me! No matter what is going on in the world they are just excited to see and learn new things! – Miss Allie DeGuire

I am thankful for my students because they are so happy to have me as their teacher. They inspire me every day to be the best person, teacher, and role model I can be! They help take my mind off the bad days and make my good days even better! I am thankful for their sweet personalities, loving hugs, and silly jokes. – Miss Baylee

I am thankful to have such hard workers in my classes. They bring such joy to my life and they are some of the goofiest people I know. It is very exciting to watch my students grow into such amazing people, and I am proud to have built those special relationships with them! I’ve been told that some of my students have named a doll after me and that has probably been one of the highest honors I could’ve received. It is so humbling to know that I can make that much of a difference in a small person’s life!
– Miss Jenna

I am thankful for my students for being a key part in what makes my job something I absolutely love. Their hard work, kindness, talent, and determination drives me to be not only a better coach but an overall better person every day! I couldn’t be more thankful. – Miss Kayla

It’s hard to put into words how thankful I am for “my kids”! Their sweet smiles, hugs, and eagerness to learn makes me so proud! I am thankful that I not only get to teach them gymnastics but also life skills like taking turns and sharing! They make me smile each and every day! – Miss Megan Lewis

I am thankful that my kids can cheer me up if I am having a bad day. They try their hardest at every skill they try to do, and for their stories that can always make me laugh or put a smile on my face! – Miss Megan Jourden

I am thankful for my athletes because they continue to inspire me to be the best coach I can be. They always have a smile on their faces and continue to have fun and work hard at each practice. – Miss Cindy

I like kids because we get to play a little part in molding them into who they will be and help instill skills in them that they will use the rest of their lives. – Coach Jack

I am thankful for the students because they add so much positivity and laughter to my day! – Miss Allie Centerino

I am thankful for my students because they never fail to put a smile on my face. Every single student is so unique in his or her own way, and they bring so much joy and happiness to my life. I am also thankful for how they continue to push me to be the best person/coach that I can be, and it is so rewarding to see how excited they are to be at the gym and to see me. I love my students and am SO thankful for them. – Miss Camri

I am thankful for my students because they are my getaway from stressful every day life. They brighten my day and they remind me how joyful the teaching profession can be. – Coach Tyler

I am thankful for my students because there is no better motivation to be a more patient, understanding person than teaching young kids. Every class I’m pushed to improve as a coach so that I can become a good role model for my students to take with them through their childhood into adulthood. – Coach Logan

I am thankful for my students because they never fail to put a smile on my face and make my day even better. All of the energy they bring to class helps drive me to be an even better teacher for them. And you can’t forget about all the stories they bring to class with them that never fail to put a smile on my face and make me laugh!
–Miss Katie Doerr

I’m thankful for their happiness and their energy! I absolutely adore everyone that I have taught!! – Miss Samantha

I’m thankful for all of my students that come to the gym full of positivity and try and make others happy! – Miss Madison Eden

I’m thankful for my students because they give me the motivation to become the best coach and overall person that I can be. They are always putting a smile on my face. I love the life skills I get to teach them besides gymnastics and the funny stories I get to bring home every day. – Miss Hailey

I’m thankful for my students because they give me the opportunity to share a sport I love. Every single day I leave the gym in a better mood than when I came. – Miss Kyra

I’m thankful for my students’ passion and love for the sport that I love! The excitement of a new skill or a correction is what keeps me wanting to be the best I can for them!
– Miss Melissa Barron

I am thankful for my students for reasons I cannot count. No matter how my day goes nothing else matters once I walk in those Barron doors. They bring so much energy, fun, love, and laughter to my life. Kids truly don’t know how hilarious they can be! – Miss Allison Carter

I’m thankful for the students that I have taught because when you are having a bad day they make it so much better! They are always able to put a smile on my face.
– Miss Bailey Waller

I am thankful for seeing the pure excitement on my students faces when they run through the door not only to do gymnastics but to see you. From seeing them finally do their “Ta Da” in parent and tot to mastering their back handspring on beam, seeing their faces when they accomplish something is why I do what I do. – Miss Malinda

I’m thankful for all the students at Barron as they make me smile. It is a joy seeing all of them so excited about class and learning new skills. I am thankful for the dedicated teachers and the time and energy they put in to every hour they work. – Miss Barb

I am thankful for my students for always putting a smile on my face and showing me that if you fail, remember to always get back up and try again. Not only do I teach my students about gymnastics, but they teach me about patience, keeping a positive attitude, and to never give up. – Miss Emma

This Thanksgiving, I challenge each one of you to embody the vulnerable spirit of a child that allows for them to freely express gratitude towards others; when you have something nice to say to someone, say it. In closing, I will leave you with my own words of gratitude. If I could, I would say it to you in a scary voice like the kids did in my class on Tuesday, but then again, I just don’t think that would be as cute coming from a 32-year old woman.

I am so thankful for each smile, laugh, hug, and cheer that I get from my students. I am thankful when they encourage one another and overcome their fears because “nastics” made them so strong and big. I am thankful when I look over at a teacher and see that her students are spontaneously tackling her with a group hug. Little do they know that she just lost a loved one or is worried about someone that is sick. Little do they know the healing power of making her smile or laugh. Kids are pure of heart and help you to remember all that is good in this world. Because of kids, I get to have the best job in the world and work alongside the most phenomenal individuals that I know. Kids remind me that it is okay to give thanks to others; they actually remind me that expressing those two words is so simple yet so special. So today, from the bottom of my heart and from everyone at Barron Gymnastics, Thank You. Your kids do, and always will, make a difference. – Miss Julie