Educators are an interesting bunch. As the summer ends, I find myself like many other educators looking forward to the start of school. What will the school year bring? How can I make sure that I am giving my students everything they need academically and emotionally? What will my students bring to the learning environment?
It’s easy to become frustrated with the current climate of education, but this year I give you a story and a challenge.
When I was a young parent, we had limited funds for Christmas gifts. I remember crying for days because I knew that I couldn’t get my girls all of the “stuff” that other kids would get. Sure, they knew how much I loved them; I told them every day and showed them every day, just not with “stuff.” On Christmas morning, an interesting thing happened – my children loved their gifts! They didn’t care if their dollhouse people looked like giants in the secondhand dollhouse. In fact, they made more elaborate stories and creative ways to make what I thought would be a sad Christmas, one of the best Christmases we have had together. Although we had limited finances for that Christmas holiday, we made the best of a bad situation. And as it turned out, it was better than I ever expected.
My challenge to you is to remember that although we may not have enough supplies, our students are counting on us to have the best school year ever. We need to be creative in our teaching and develop plans to ensure that all students can be successful. We need to make the best of a bad situation. Our students need to see every day how much we care for them. I believe it was Lorraine Monroe, and I am guessing numerous others who said, “Kids care about how much you care before they care about how much you know.”
Education isn’t too different from holidays – sometimes you have a lot, and sometimes you don’t feel as though you have enough; but if you care and you show your students that you care, it will be better than you ever expected.
I look forward to a wonderful year with you. May your school year be filled with success!