When I look at the top articles I see words like "madness", "blast away", "scandal", "data revolution", and "failure". As a teacher, it can be very difficult to stay positive about what you have chosen to dedicate your life to. Not ONE...I repeat.....not ONE of the titles mentions the word "STUDENT". How do we stay motivated and eager as educators? The answer is very simple....students. It is the thank you from a student, it is the smile from a student, it is the tears from a student, it is the high-five from a student that motivates us to grow, learn, love, and share.
I haven't seen my students since June. But today, during the first in-service of the school year, I felt motivated and inspired because of other professionals.
Have you every seen Mr. Hollands Opus? Gosh, I saw this movie a long time ago when it first came out in 1995. "Glenn Holland is a passionate musician who dreams of composing one truly memorable piece of music. But reality intrudes when he reluctantly accepts a "day job" as a high school music teacher to support his family. In time, however, Mr. Holland realizes that his real passion is teaching, and his legacy is the generations of young people he inspires." -Amazon.com
At the end of the movie, Holland is cleaning out his classroom after retiring. His wife and son surprise him with a large gathering of students both past and present. They celebrate the wonderfully amazing career he has had. The clip was shown to the staff today. It solidifies how many lives a teacher may touch without truly knowing the impact he/she has in the moment. Here is the clip:
WARNING: It may cause tears (I struggled to hold them back today. I didn't want to have my mascara running down my face on my very first day with the new staff).
As we approach a new school year, challenge yourself to think what will your legacy be as a teacher? What will you do this year to build your legacy? What do you want your students to remember about you as an educator?