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    #1

    Complimenting a teacher

    Hello. Today I met my literature class teacher (she was leaving back to America after spending 2 semesters teaching at college) and I was trying to find words to thank her for her lectures she was giving through the year. I said that her lectures were interesting. And then I found myself tongue-tied because that's the only compliment I was able to come up with. Can you suggest any other phrases or sentences I can use next time when I am in such a situation? I don't know why I become kind of dumb when I meet foreign teachers in the hallway of my university. What topics or subjects I could bring up in a talk with a foreign teacher. All opinions and comments will be very much appreciated. Thank you.

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    #2

    Re: Complimenting a teacher

    This response comes from a not very young, rather old-fashioned Englishman. My generation was not brought up to give, or to know how to accept, compliments.

    For me, "I really enjoyed your lectures" or "Thank you for your very interesting lectures" would be fulsome praise.

    Anything more than that would be embarrassing for me to say, and excrutiating to receive. Let's hope some younger members will give you some gushier ideas.

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    #3

    Re: Complimenting a teacher

    Quote Originally Posted by fivejedjon View Post

    Anything more than that would be embarrassing for me to say, and excrutiating to receive. Let's hope some younger members will give you some gushier ideas.
    Yes, that's the thing. I was having troubles finding words because I didn't know would it be appropriate or not for me to say something and for her to accept it. I didn't want her to feel uncomfortable. It's a little weird for me because I know Americans quite well and their culture too, but there's a barrier comes up when such a situation occurs. Is that a cultural difference thing? Or am I just scared to say something that will make her feel uncomfortable? Too much thoughts running through my mind.

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    #4

    Re: Complimenting a teacher

    For me,as student, I had told my teacher " Thank you very much teacher, you simplified everything, your explanation was excellent "really her explanation was extremely nice.It is not quite good example but anyway .
    But I do not know why in public speaking I cannot speak English fluently,and it is a problem that extremely annoy me.

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    #5

    Re: Complimenting a teacher

    Quote Originally Posted by Dready View Post
    Hello. Today I met my literature class teacher (she was leaving back to America after spending 2 semesters teaching at college) and I was trying to find words to thank her for her lectures she was giving through the year. I said that her lectures were interesting. And then I found myself tongue-tied because that's the only compliment I was able to come up with. Can you suggest any other phrases or sentences I can use next time when I am in such a situation? I don't know why I become kind of dumb when I meet foreign teachers in the hallway of my university. What topics or subjects I could bring up in a talk with a foreign teacher. All opinions and comments will be very much appreciated. Thank you.

    ***** NOT A TEACHER *****


    Hello, Dready:


    (1) First, I thought that you would like to know that it is better to

    say "going back/ returning to America." I mention this only because I am

    confident that you do not want to make this mistake again.


    (2) It's wonderful that you want to express your gratitude to

    your teachers. If you find it difficult, why not put it in writing? So

    when you personally say goodbye, you could hand him/her a small

    gift with a card. I am sure that there are some things that are unique

    to your country. They would make a gift that the teacher would never

    forget. For example, I understand that in Russia there is a doll inside a

    doll inside a doll. Then you can attach your note to the gift. In your

    note, you can use some sayings that I have collected:


    "When the student is ready, the master will appear." You can tell

    the teacher that s/he was that master.

    "One day with an excellent teacher is better than 1,000 days of

    concentrated study." You can tell him/her that this is a Japanese

    proverb and that you learned more with her/him than you did with

    anyone else.

    "A teacher affects eternity; he can never tell where his influence

    stops." This is a well-known quotation from an American named

    Henry Brooks Adams (1838 - 1918). Of course, for a woman you

    could change the pronoun. You can assure her that her influence

    will be expressed through your future actions and attitudes.

    (3) And please don't forget: most good speakers rehearse. Write out

    the words that you want to say, and then in the privacy of your

    bedroom practice saying them aloud -- as if she were listening to you.

    "Practice makes perfect," you know.

    (4) Many students do not express their gratitude to a good teacher.

    It's wonderful that you want to. And she will always remember sincere

    words that come from your heart. In fact, one sweet sentence can

    touch her heart better than all the words in the world. For example,

    here in the States, when a teacher is sick, a substitute teacher takes

    his/her place for the day. One day a substitute teacher did such a

    great job that some students said (as they were leaving the classroom):

    "I learned more today than I have learned all this term." That substitute

    teacher would never forget that single sentence.


    Sincerely,


    James




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    #6

    Re: Complimenting a teacher

    Quote Originally Posted by TheParser View Post
    "When the student is ready, the master will appear."

    "One day with an excellent teacher is better than 1,000 days of concentrated study." You can tell him/her that this is a Japanese proverb and that you learned more with her/him than you did with anyone else.

    "A teacher affects eternity; he can never tell where his influence stops."
    I am sure that some people would be deeply moved by such thoughts.
    I would just want to be a thousand miles away. I must stress that that is a purely personal response, and is not to be taken in any way as a criticism of TheParser's ideas.

    The straightforward thing is to say/write what you want to. I am sure that the teacher will appreciate your motives. Even a curmudgeon like me would - and I would accept that my personal embarrassment (which I would do my best not to reveal to the student) was my problem, not the student's.

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    #7

    Re: Complimenting a teacher

    TheParser, thanks a million for your thoughts. Your suggestions and pieces of advice will definitely help me when I want to express my gratitude to a teacher.

    P.S. Thanks for this line spacing. Being a dyslexic like myself, it's much easier to read texts written in such form. :)

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    #8

    Re: Complimenting a teacher

    Quote Originally Posted by TheParser View Post
    ***** NOT A TEACHER *****


    Hello, Dready:


    (1) First, I thought that you would like to know that it is better to

    say "going back/ returning to America." I mention this only because I am

    confident that you do not want to make this mistake again.


    (2) It's wonderful that you want to express your gratitude to

    your teachers. If you find it difficult, why not put it in writing? So

    when you personally say goodbye, you could hand him/her a small

    gift with a card. I am sure that there are some things that are unique

    to your country. They would make a gift that the teacher would never

    forget. For example, I understand that in Russia there is a doll inside a

    doll inside a doll. Then you can attach your note to the gift. In your

    note, you can use some sayings that I have collected:


    "When the student is ready, the master will appear." You can tell

    the teacher that s/he was that master.

    "One day with an excellent teacher is better than 1,000 days of

    concentrated study." You can tell him/her that this is a Japanese

    proverb and that you learned more with her/him than you did with

    anyone else.

    "A teacher affects eternity; he can never tell where his influence

    stops." This is a well-known quotation from an American named

    Henry Brooks Adams (1838 - 1918). Of course, for a woman you

    could change the pronoun. You can assure her that her influence

    will be expressed through your future actions and attitudes.

    (3) And please don't forget: most good speakers rehearse. Write out

    the words that you want to say, and then in the privacy of your

    bedroom practice saying them aloud -- as if she were listening to you.

    "Practice makes perfect," you know.

    (4) Many students do not express their gratitude to a good teacher.

    It's wonderful that you want to. And she will always remember sincere

    words that come from your heart. In fact, one sweet sentence can

    touch her heart better than all the words in the world. For example,

    here in the States, when a teacher is sick, a substitute teacher takes

    his/her place for the day. One day a substitute teacher did such a

    great job that some students said (as they were leaving the classroom):

    "I learned more today than I have learned all this term." That substitute

    teacher would never forget that single sentence.


    Sincerely,


    James


    Great answer and examples, but sometimes the teacher do not give you even the opportunity to talk or ask him and I fell he was not glad to teach us.

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    #9

    Re: Complimenting a teacher

    Quote Originally Posted by symaa View Post
    Great answer and examples, but sometimes the teacher do not give you even the opportunity to talk or ask him and I fell he was not glad to teach us.
    Probably there's a high power distance in your country, and teachers don't like get into friendly talks with their inferiors. Though I'm not sure.

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    #10

    Re: Complimenting a teacher

    Quote Originally Posted by Dready View Post
    Probably there's a high power distance in your country, and teachers don't like get into friendly talks with their inferiors. Though I'm not sure.
    No, not all of them are the same but it depend on the teacher's personality.
    Really I do not see that inferior is the appropriate word but anyway good luck for you.

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