Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Why I teach

I watched my student cry from across the room. She drew in a shaky breath. Tears dripped off her nose. She gulped air and turned the page. Someone got up and got her a tissue but no one else seemed to notice. The last chapter of Where the Red Fern Grows gets them every time. At that moment, I felt like such a teacher. In the best sense of the word. Who else gets to be there right at that moment when a person discovers the power of words?

The other day we pulled out the globe. The kid in the yellow sweatshirt was the sun and we rotated and orbited around him. We talked about the Reason for the Seasons. Realization dawned and half a dozen voices piped up. Really? No, wait, really that's why?

I love my job because every day I get to watch people doing things that they didn't know how to do yesterday. They learn because of me, and that's really, very cool.