|This is a touching story! I found myself remembering the times my own teachers encouraged me with small, kind words and deeds they likely wouldn't remember, yet I wouldn't be where I am today without them.
A few suggestions, but they focus mostly around sentence structure:
1. I was seven years old, and I had no concepts of terms like “relative poverty” and “working-poor.” Remove the 's' from 'concepts'.
2. See if you can avoid passive verbs such as "was", "were", "is", and "am" and replace with more active verbs. For instance Ms. Andrews was at her desk checking homework, and there were four other kids in the room playing with their gifts. This can be restructured to something like Ms. Andrews sat at her desk grading papers, and four other kids played with their gifts (sitting at their desks, on the floor?).
3. Avoid using "which" as it lengthens a sentence that should be two. Dad turned the door key to our apartment, and we found my mom folding laundry on the dining room table, which was proof that particle board could be passed down at least one generation. Try something like We entered the apartment and found Mom folding laundry on the dining room table. This proved that particle board could be passed down at least one generation. I removed the part about the key, because it doesn't necessarily move the story along. Now if the key turning had screeched making you cringe or caused another reaction, that would be different.
Overall, a well-written piece. You showed how your teacher's words impacted both you and Becky that ripples still in your life and those you come in contact with. It's a good lesson for all of us in that everything we do, no matter how small, can have a far-reaching effect on others.
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