And the Oscar for Best Student Performance Goes to…

It is hard to believe, but another college graduation has come and gone over this past weekend. Great day full of happiness, tears, and congratulations for a major milestone becoming reality. But for me it causes me to pause and give thanks…

GraduationSure, there is much to be grateful for in terms of a successful year: curriculum covered, goals met, learning targets achieved. As an educator, I find myself loving all things pedagogical and how to give an amazing classroom experience. That may sound a bit nerdy, but for those who love teaching you know what I mean.

Today, for this post, I just want to say how grateful I am for my students. After all, without students, there is no need for pedagogy or learning targets, is there? I am blessed with great students – oh sure, there are challenges to be worked through and character to shape, but I love the classroom and I love even more those who sit in my classroom.

I have bright students, funny students, and motivated students. And I have students that point me to the Gospel of Jesus and right responses and for that I am most grateful. It is a wonderful thing when you can call a student “friend” and they sharpen your life as much as you influence theirs.

And so today, here is a toast to my students, an appreciation for their love of learning, and the endurance to bear with me in class. My students make for challenging circumstances at times, but they are the very reason why I teach and still love to be in the classroom.

For you teachers, as you close out another school year, you will need time to recover from the craziness of it all and renew those brain cells. But also take time to reflect on those students who have impacted your own life and made teaching the greatest profession still around. And maybe even give them a personal “thank you.” They will not soon forget it.

And for you students of mine reading this…thank you. You make my life rich. And forward this to other students of mine as well. The success of a school year cannot be measured just in terms of learning targets, tests, and projects. The transcending successes are those students who leave our classrooms and turn their world upside down as they influence others.

I love how William Butler Yeats put it: “Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire.” Teachers, never lose that spark.

Community Input: So how have your students impacted you this year?


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