It’s How We Make Them Feel

It’s been such a long time that I haven’t written anything here. This experience made me decide to put my thoughts in writing.
I started reading Teach Like a Pirate by Dave Burgess, a few days ago and love the simplicity of words, the concrete examples, but most of all, the thinking-outside-the box. The title speaks for itself!

As I am writing this, I am only on page 38. Consider me a slow reader, but I would like to stop every now and then. Reflect on what I just read that resonates a lot. Do something else or take my dog for a walk to the park.

On page 21, as he continues to talk about building RAPPORT with students, “…working to create a safe and supportive environment where students feel valued, I earn their trust…,” reminds me of a student that was placed in my class two months before the school year ended. Moving from one place to another, from one school to another, meeting new friends and building relationships, and then, off again.

Two months! Yes. Was I worried about this student catching up with the curriculum? No. I was worried more about how we can make this young soul “feel at home” in a new environment. It’s not only me but how the other students in the class and the rest of the school community can work together giving him the assurance that he came to a safe place and nurturing environment where he is valued. From Day 1, all hands on deck.

Came the last day of school. The bell rung at the end of the day. Someone was sobbing. All the students were around and trying to comfort him. I came and asked him why he’s crying. He replies, “I don’t want school to end.”

It moved me. I was lost for words for a few seconds and didn’t expect to hear that from him. I hugged him and talked about all the wonderful things that he can do over the summer as I walked him towards the classroom door. After that, I had to turn my back, walk a few steps away and take some deep breaths because I was in tears too.

Whether it’s the beginning of the school year or the end, it’s how we make them feel. He wasn’t with us for very long but it’s unmistakable that the whole school community touched his heart!

Without us knowing, we are touching those young hearts. That is the rewarding part of this profession. What is yours?




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