Tuesday, September 6, 2011

thoughts on a rainy tuesday eve...

Keep away from people who try to belittle your ambitions. Small people always do that, but the really great make you feel that you, too, can become great.
Mark Twain

Alright, so most of you know that I am passionate about many things. But right now, in the thick of my second week of teaching my thoughts and inspiration for this post are turned towards education. I just moved into the most lovely home where three other lovely roommates reside. Tonight I arrived home from a busy day at school and went to the fridge (naturally) to forage for food. One by one the roommates came together in our kitchen, snacking on Cranberry Seltzer and Waldorf salad and began a discussion. You would think that our chat would have been about the long weekend, the boys in our lives, etc. But I am impressed and pleasantly surprised that our mingle turned into a passionate discussion about education, politics, religion, inspiration and ambition. My roommate Rebecca shared some goodness with me that I will share with you. We were reflecting on our great teachers and their ability to inspire curiosity in the classroom. Curiosity in itself, is a sign of intellect.  Of course as a teacher I have that desire. This teacher of the PS22 choir seen in the video below definitely has created a room full of believers. Most importantly, the students believe in themselves. That is the most beautiful gift a teacher can give to a student. Watch the expression on the faces of the children. They are so into the music. In an interview, one of the students said, "I was scared to raise my hand in class before. I didn't want to share what I knew...but then I thought, if I can sing a solo in choir, I can raise my hand and speak in class". What an exquisite lesson of confidence learned. Readers, I would love to know your thoughts and memories of your great teachers. How did they challenge you to accomplish great things? What did they do to lift your confidence? What teachers inspired you and why?

And also to my readers I want to say to those of you (hopefully most of you) who have tasted the fruit of having a dream,  enormous or small,  to you I say...Don't Stop Believin'!

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