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Dakota County fifth-grade teachers spread joy with chalk messages

“This is life changing for them. This is something they will remember forever.”

LAKEVILLE, Minn. —

Chalk has the power to make people smile. 

And chalk is what two teachers at East Lake Elementary School in Lakeville are using to spread joy.

I miss talking to you in the morning.

We miss your smile, empathy and leadership. 

See you soon. 

Those are a few messages Kristin Moore left on the driveways of her students.

"I saw a teacher in another state post on Instagram that she did this and felt inspired! I wanted my students, and their families, to know that I am thinking about them and that we are all in this together," Moore said.

Another East Lake fifth-grade teacher, Audrey Glogoza, left encouraging messages for her students, too. The teachers said they were in separate cars and practiced appropriate social distancing.

East Lake is in the Rosemount-Apple Valley-Eagan School District which makes up 196. 

The messages moved Jacob Wintheiser and his mother, Jennifer Wintheiser, to tears. They were surprised when they exited the garage to walk their dog. 

"It was just mind-blowing that they took the time to do all of this," Jacob Wintheiser said. “She is just the best teacher you could ask for. She really is the best teacher in the world.” 

His mom said the handwritten messages helped the community connect during a time when we all are a part. 

“Teachers have a very special place on this earth and for them to do something like this it just uplifts our spirits,” she said. “This is life changing for them. This is something they will remember forever.”

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Jacob, also in the fifth-grade, said “Everything that is happening in the world right now is overwhelming.” 

Words carry weight. And the positive affirmations show the special bond between teachers and their students. At the Blumb house, the teachers even left messages for the siblings of student Ruby Blumb. 

In Rosemount, a message for Hanna  said we miss your empathy, smile and leadership.

"It made me so happy,"  Hanna said. "Knowing that she thinks those things of me and she came here and wrote that just to make me happy."

Hannaha’s mom, Angie Fischer Decker, was also overwhelmed with emotion.

"It has just been a hard time for a lot of people and for their teachers to go the extra mile,"  Fischer Decker said. "It lets  the kids know that they are thinking about them it just meant a lot."

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