A good teacher will continue to inspire their students for years after they leave school.
As someone who always loved reading and writing growing up, my English teachers felt like the wisest people in the world, and I loved nothing more than an afternoon spent soaking up their love of literature.
Looking back now as an adult, with friends who spend their days nurturing young minds, I wish I could have let such teachers know what they meant to me. Instead, I was of course a moody teenager desperate to pretend I preferred MSN Messenger to William Shakespeare.
Fortunately, some people don’t take until their mid-20s to appreciate the priceless gift of education. People such as the choir members from Hingham Middle School in Massachusetts.
The Hingham Middle School Junior Choral Spectrum surprised their teacher, Mr. Christopher Landis, at his wedding rehearsal brunch just a few week ago. Our students practiced every Sunday for a month to get ready for the surprise. Thanks to HMS parents Joy Foraste and Margit Foley for organizing this touching moment. Congratulations to Christopher and Joe on their wedding! All of us here at HPS wish you nothing but happiness!!
Posted by Hingham Public Schools on Friday, 11 January 2019
A truly heartwarming video has emerged which shows Hingham Middle School pupils serenading their teacher Christopher Landis at his wedding rehearsal brunch.
Mr Landis, a choir master who has taught at the school for six years, appeared overwhelmed with emotion as his pupils gave a beautiful rendition of The Beatles’ All You Need Is Love.
The teacher became engaged to his now-husband, Joe Michienzie, on Christmas Eve 2016. While most newly engaged couples want to shout their happy news from the rooftops, Mr Landis decided to keep quiet; concerned about his pupils’ reaction to his same sex marriage.
News of the engagement got out, and those connected with the school wanted to show the beloved teacher how delighted they were for him.
The Hingham Middle School Junior Choral Spectrum surprised their teacher, Mr. Christopher Landis, at his wedding rehearsal brunch just a few week ago.
Our students practiced every Sunday for a month to… https://t.co/UUr04kSKoU
— Hingham Public Schools (@HinghamSchools) January 11, 2019
Mums of Hingham Middle School pupils, Joy Foraste and Margit Foley, put their heads together and concocted the special surprise for Mr Landis, with a little help from his then fiancé Joe.
The kindhearted mothers emailed other parents whose children sang in the choir, asking if the kids would be interested in surprising Mr Landis at his rehearsal brunch.
Joy told The New York Times:
He’s the best teacher, and he’s got this great energy, and he makes every school function fun.
We thought, wouldn’t it be awesome to do something for his wedding?
Joy and Margit expected ‘at least 15’ of the choir kids to get involved. Instead, 50 out of the 70 members committed themselves, practicing their performance during secret Sunday evening rehearsals.
The footage of the children singing taken by a bartender at the venue has since gone viral. Although the video was shot on December 21, it is still proving to be popular, having been featured in The New York Times and Inside Edition.
Mr. Landis revealed how he is now comfortable describing Joe as his husband when at school, explaining:
I was flabbergasted by how much they cared.
As a middle-school teacher, I see students struggling so much with trying to figure out who they are.
Some of the students singing have inner struggles, and things I know about going on at home. I was so glad they were there, feeling the love in the room and knowing everything’s going to be O.K., that things do work out.
Beautiful! Congratulations to the happy couple! What a wonderful group of students! ❤️🌈
— Sarah Zhou (@SarahKZhou) January 20, 2019
Amazing. This needs to go viral! Had tears from the first note #loveislove
— Stacy B #CafeMartin 🏈🎭⚾️ (@StacySoxPats) January 16, 2019
If you have a tirelessly brilliant teacher like Mr. Landis in your life, let them know. They deserve all the praise and love in the world.
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Jules studied English Literature with Creative Writing at Lancaster University before earning her masters in International Relations at Leiden University in The Netherlands (Hoi!). She then trained as a journalist through News Associates in Manchester. Jules has previously worked as a mental health blogger, copywriter and freelancer for various publications.