The Ripple Effect of Teaching

Gratitude as a Token of Appreciation

In the realm of education, moments of appreciation often come as rays of sunshine, reminding educators of the profound effect their efforts can have on their students' lives. Recently, such a moment unfolded in the form of a small yet incredibly gesture from one of the students enrolled in the TSKS01: Digital Communications course at Linköping University (LiU), Sweden.

As a teaching assistant for the course, I had the pleasure of assisting students applying the theory learnt in lectures in solving different problems and improve their technical problem solving skills. Among many things that I learnt and experienced while being teaching assitant of the course, one particular student’s act of gratitude made me happy and motivated. A heartfelt email landed in my inbox, expressing thanks for the course’s guidance and support. What added an extra sprinkle of warmth to their appreciation was the box of chocolates left at my office as a token of their gratitude.

“Thank you so much for your generous gesture! Your box of chocolates was a delightful surprise and truly brightened my day,” was my immediate response. It wasn’t merely the sweet treats that left an impression, but the genuine thoughtfulness behind the gesture that made it so impactful.

Knowing that my contribution to the course positively affected this student’s learning journey was immensely fulfilling. His words of appreciation served as a motivation boost, reminding me of the importance of fostering a supportive and encouraging learning environment.

“I’m happy to hear that you found the course helpful, and I’m glad that I could contribute positively to your learning experience. Your appreciation motivates me even more to continue assisting and helping students like you,” I expressed in my response.

Such moments reinforce the significance of gratitude in education. They underscore the reciprocal nature of teaching and learning, emphasizing that appreciation and acknowledgment can create a powerful cycle of encouragement.

It’s gestures like these that serve as a reminder of the profound impact educators can have on their students' lives. Beyond the syllabus and lectures, it’s the support, guidance, and encouragement that truly shape a student’s educational journey.

To the student who kindly shared their appreciation through that box of chocolates, thank you. Your gesture exemplifies the essence of gratitude in education and serves as a beacon of encouragement for educators like myself.

May we all continue to foster environments where appreciation and support are not only valued but freely expressed. Together, let’s create spaces where gratitude flourishes and where each gesture, no matter how small, serves as a reminder of the positive impact we can have on one another’s lives.

Here’s to a future filled with learning, growth, and an abundance of gratitude.

Zakir Hussain Shaik
Zakir Hussain Shaik
PhD Student in Communications Systems

My research interests include wireless communications, distributed signal processing, and convex optimization