Thursday, August 21, 2014

Parenting Students

On the first day back to school, our superintendent, Dr. Turner, challenged all of us teachers to treat our students like they are our children: to go the extra mile, to fight for them, to make sure they are nourished educationally, and to think about their future as citizens of this great country.  As teachers, to raise the next generation to meet the challenges of its day, we can inspire dreams by teaching students to manage their time, to follow through on their responsibilities, to see that their decisions do lead them down certain paths.  If we care about our students like parents care about their children, we will create lessons that will make students feel growing pains that cause them to even make startling statements like "I can't do this!" or "It's impossible," or "I need help" or "I'll hang out with my friends as soon as I finish my homework," or "I really like being challenged by this material."  Eventually, if we stick to our guns, students may reflect on their education and say, "I hated going through that class, but it taught me how to . . . " or "Now I see why we had to do this work."  Or perhaps they will even say, "Thank you. You believed in me when I did not believe in myself." Parents and teachers have a tough job filled with satisfying sacrifice and love like none other, and the adults of tomorrow deserve that sort of love so they can pass it on to the next generation.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

See How They've Grown

When school dismissed for summer, I transplanted the two inch tall plants, which had been growing in my classroom since my homeroom students planted them in January, into the earth. Not all have survived: rabbits, deer, weeds and the issues of being started indoors all threatened their existence, but now, finally, they are starting to bloom. It is worth the wait. Soon the juniors who planted these seeds will start their senior year. I can't wait to see them on August 25th, the first day of the 2014-2015 school year.