A letter of recommendation supports a person in an application for a job or school. As a physical education teacher, you have observed students and learned their strengths and personal qualities. When a student asks you to write a recommendation, draw on your knowledge and personal experience of him in a way that's relevant to the application and casts him in the best possible light as a candidate for the position.
Introduce yourself in the first paragraph, stating your role as a P.E. teacher, the name of the school and how you met the student. For example: "I am John Smith, Head of P.E. at St. James High School since 2002. I taught Jane Doe from 2004 to 2009."
Describe the student's strengths and qualities in the next paragraph or two, providing concrete examples rather than simply making general statements. For example, instead of writing, "William picks up new skills quickly," write, "William had never played hockey when I met him, but he advanced to the position of team captain within six months."
Provide examples relevant to the application. For example, if the student is applying for vocational training as a social worker, share an experience that shows her people skills: "Jane devoted up to four hours a week to mentoring young swimmers. I trusted her with the task because she is a natural motivator."
Write about your personal relationship to the student, as this is information that only you can provide: "I looked forward to teaching Jane, as I knew she would give me her best efforts every time. Teaching her was often an inspiration and encouragement on an otherwise unremarkable day." Again, tie in these observations with specific examples.
Refer specifically to the college and program in the recommendation, explaining why your student is a good candidate. Say why you think he will benefit from it and what benefits the college will receive in return.
Mention athletic achievements, such as awards and wins. Include details such as the number of other competitors or names of previous recipients if these facts help make the scale of the achievement clearer. For example: "Jane had to beat over 200 other contestants to win first place," or "William won the Player of the Year award, a feat previously achieved by Joe Blow, the Springfield Stars footballer."
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