I'm really not that teacher. The favorite teacher that all the kids love. The one who knows all the students' names on the first day of school. Who's considered "cool" for being relaxed and understanding about homework, tests, labs, and exams.
I'm not an inflexible British schoolmaster from the 1950s, either. Or a high priest who accepts only the schools top 10% into his demanding, rigorous physics course.
I try to make my physics course the most challenging class students want to come to. Not easy to balance the "challenging" with "want to come to." And I don't presume to get it right.
But there are many teachers at my own school who do a better job of connecting with students on an interpersonal level. So I don't usually get anything like a student-delivered cake on my birthday.
But there was apparently some instigation for such a thing this year. And the work looks to have been inspired by the difficult FBD test they took on my birthday. I was out that day. The cake was brought in the following day.
A wonderful treat, and highly unexpected! ("Old Man Baird" is what my buddy, Rick, imagined my students called me about 15 years ago. I've incorporated it into my own classroom schtick. So now my students may well call me that. D-oh!)