Okay guys, I hate to be the old curmudgeon, but this needs to be said:
Stop emailing your teacher the same way you text your friend.
Here's a recent email from a student::
I shared the essay with u
Does this seem perfectly acceptable to you? Well, it shouldn't.
Here's the deal: even though teachers should always treat you with the same respect as you treat them, it doesn't mean you should interact with us like we're peers. Remember, we're the same people who write your letters of recommendation. You need to be extra careful with everything you write. That doesn't mean you need to be super formal or deferential--just courteous.
So, your email might look like this instead:
I just wanted to let you know that I shared my essay with you in Google Drive. I'm looking forward to your feedback whenever you get around to it.
Thanks a lot,
See the difference? The first example is saying, essentially, "I'm too lazy to even write out the word 'you', now grade my essay."
The second is saying: "I respect you enough to take the time to really think about the message I want to convey, and I thank you in advance for your time and attention."
Kids who operate with the former end up not having recommendations written for them, not getting a C+ bumped to and B-, and not getting special consideration on a college application.
Bottom line: your tone is as important (if not more) as your content. Interestingly, there can be a disconnect between the way students interact in person vs. online. The humble, respectful "live" student can come off like a jerk in digital correspondence.
This of course, speaks to a greater issue: the easier it is to communicate, the more careless--and perhaps thoughtless--we become. And this, of course, is not exclusive to teens.
So the next time you send an email to a teacher, counselor, supervisor, or any other authority figure, be sure to:
1. Ask yourself if you would want an admissions counselor at your dream school to read this email.
2. Use the Grammarly Chrome extension to check for spelling and grammar errors.
3. Read it aloud to make sure you didn't miss anything.
4. Be sure you've included a greeting and a salutation.
Follow these simple rules, and every time you press "send" you can feel confident that you're becoming more skilled and less annoying.