September and October were tough months, with lots of research tasks to accomplish and too much travel in a short period of time.  So when I got hit with a large pile of grading in early November it left me feeling burned out and even slightly discouraged.

So today I got an e-mail from one of the students in my recently concluded Python class, which included the following:

I just wanted to thank you for a great first quarter at DePaul.   I was not sure how I was going to like computer science because of my bad experience in High School.   You really made everything easy to learn and understand, and your quick response to emails really helped too.  […] I am very excited that you will be my teacher for my next computer science class.

To give you some background, this student shared with me that his high school programming teacher would only call on his favorites during class.  He was not one of the favorites, and told me he used to sit with his hand up and never get called on.    I was shocked to learn this, because this student was one of the best in the Python class this quarter always positively contributing to the class discussion.

That he wrote me to thank me is already a boost.  But to think that a student who took my class is now excited about computer science is amazing.  It more than makes all the grading, and everything else, worthwhile.