A Sincere #DENthanks

Hello my friends! I try to say “please” and “thank you” like my momma taught me. Sometimes though, in the hustle and bustle of things, I forget. For the past 2 years, I have seen friends on Facebook do a daily thankfulness post for the month of November. For whatever reason, I don’t. I thought about sending emails to all the people I want to say, “Thanks for making my work-life so personally fulfilling.” That’s really more of my style. However, I thought it selfish of me to not share what these people mean to me, and I also wanted to tell you. So, I’m going to just post a whole bunch of thanks here. I hope you don’t mind. Actually, I hope you’ll do the same.

In addition to all of life’s personal blessings, I am thankful for:

  • the great and not so great teachers that I had as a student. They helped me hone my craft before I ever even knew that it would be my calling.
  • the teachers I knew outside of the DEN who have actively joined the community. Jessi-cola and Darcy you help me see the real impact of the work we do.
  • the hundreds of personal relationships I have formed with educators in this community. You bring me laughter and remind me that I get to work with the best teachers in this world.
  • the thousands of DEN members who are sharing and collaborating, giving of yourselves to make education better and our world better.
  • the DEN Leadership Council members who keep me always on my toes especially when they send emails that begin with, “So, I had this idea for a passion project.”
  • my DEN teammates. I probably neglect to say thank you most frequently to them. So be patient with me. I’m going to do some personal shout-outs.
  • Lance for leading us like a great teacher. You learn what makes each of us tick and adjust accordingly to be a great leader.
  • Steve for all of those heated debates/discussions to make things better without grudges or consequences. Also for always being up for an adventure.
  • Chad for doing what needs to be done and doing it instinctively.
  • Dean for reminding me not to obsess so much over perfection. its ok two have typos sometimes.
  • Jannita for challenging me to be more willing to share an idea. Even if it falls flat, nobody is more creative and willing to just put it out there than you.
  • Ginny for sharing my introversion and helping me support folks like us in the community.
  • Jeanette for always preferring to learn how to fish. You said this on our first interaction and demonstrate it regularly.
  • Hall for reminding me that editing a presentation while you are on stage is perfectly normal.
  • Kyle for always striving to learn more and be better at work and in life. You model life-long learning and inspire me to try harder.

Tell me about your #DENthanks. Send a Tweet with the hashtag #DENthanks. Add a comment here, or post to the DEN Blogs (or your own.) Post it to Facebook; send an email. Take a minute to tell the folks who support you in this community what they mean to you. If you are reading this, know that I am thankful for you. I am thankful for all the ways you have made my life better.


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  1. Dean Shareski said:

    Thanks Porter. Im the postr child for emperfection. Seriously, I appreciate all you do as well as being part of the greatest educational community on the planet.

  2. Kim Adair said:

    I am thankful to be a part of the best community on this planet. The DEN has helped me see that I am not alone in my endeavors and help is always available when it is needed. I love meeting new DEN members and seeing “seasoned” DEN members as much as possible. I have learned so much in the past 8 years and love to share what I have learned with others. The DEN has helped me become a better educator! Thank You!

  3. DiAnne said:

    I am thankful for having all of you, the DEN in my life. When I feel unappreciated in my work world, I have all of you in my corner, cheering me on. You are my life line! You make me want to try new things! Thanks all, love you!

  4. Karen Wells said:

    I am thankful for my DEN family who inspire me and provide professional insight every single day; for the six strangers I met on the DENSI “Sound of Music side tour” who have become friends that I chat with at least once a week – from Canada to Florida and Massachusetts to Idaho and North Carolina – I have learned so much from them and am thankful we share the same DEN passion; for opportunities to travel with Discovery Student Adventures; for the DEN team members who support teachers who have passion projects!

  5. Jeremy Badiner said:

    I am also thankful for the DEN (for many of the reasons you listed above). I feel like I was adopted into the DEN family after DESI this summer. The contacts, resources, friendships, and connections are amazing. The DEN is a phenomenal support system and teaching resource I find myself relying on often. We are all fortunate to be a part of this family group. I wish to thank each and every one of those who have helped, inspired, laughed, or taught me this year. I look forward to continuing my collaboration/connections for many years to come. Thank you all (and of course you, Porter, for making it all happen)! 🙂

  6. Ketsana Phommalee said:

    I am thankful for the love and support from my DEN family. From the first time I met you all, I have felt loved, encouraged and supported in many ways. Thank you so much. You mean so much to me. I am truly blessed to know you all!

  7. Gena Price said:

    DITTO! Well said everyone. I love you all, and thank you all for everything! There is no greater place for us to share and stay connected as educators and as friends.

  8. Judy Uhrig said:

    Almost daily I catch myself using or sharing a tip, trick, resource or technique that I learned from someone in the DEN. I am very thankful for the Discovery Educator Network!

  9. Dacia JONES said:

    I was extremely skeptical about joining this group of educators in Bozeman, Montana last year. After about 25 minutes, I knew that they had “something” and I wanted in. I have enjoyed two years of amazing collaboration with these special folks. This past summer changed my life when 6 dentastic women entered my life at the Von Trapp Family Lodge before DENSI 2013. We talk EVERY week and share our challenges, victories, and blessing with one another. Being thankful is certainly an understatement. Thanks DEN for accepting me as I was and molding me into who I am.

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