After an unpleasant incident last week, my husband reminded me of a simple truth: my classroom is my haven and my students are my North Star.
When relationships with colleagues become challenging, my students remind me about why I do what I do.
When the world seems to be imploding, I turn to my students.
When I’m about to try a new instructional strategy, routine, or controversial topic, I listen carefully to what my students say is working and what needs to change.
When I’m feeling lost or unappreciated, I turn to my mentors – those I know personally and those I’ve only met through the pages of a book or even a computer screen – and know that I am not alone. That I am not wrong. That I am right to centre my students and to better practices to support their learning.
When I am feeling overwhelmed, I remind myself of what’s important. Hint: it’s not the tests or the initiatives that continue to pile up like a game of Jenga until everything topples over. It is not the parents who want to snuff out equity and creativity for all because it means they can keep their child in the dark about THE WORLD.
What’s important are the connections I make and the relationships I build with my students and, through them, with their families.
What’s important are the smiles and even the laughs at my corny jokes.
What’s important are the aha moments and the struggles and how we got there and where we need to go next…together.
What’s important are the books we read and the feelings they evoke about who we are and what we want to become.
What’s important are the stories we tell each other and write together and the risks we take as a community of thinkers, writers, readers and mathematicians.
So, today I remind myself that my classroom is my haven. My students are my North Star. And, what’s important cannot be measured or weighed or ranked because when all is said and done, the students I’ve had the privilege to know will only remember how I made them feel, if they were seen or not, and not what mark they got on their report card.
My classroom is my haven.
My students are my North Star.
Cross posted to The Two Writing Teachers Tuesday Slice of Life Story Challenge.
3 thoughts on “My Haven and My North Star”
I can breathe out and relax into your post. Your mantra is soothing and supportive at the same time, like the perfect blanket. Trust in what you can control and what you know is healthy to trust. Your classroom, your students.
Thanks for sharing!
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Thank you, Emily. I’ve mostly been able to trust myself, but there have been times when this self-trust has wavered. I need to remind myself of what’s important and listen to myself. Thank you for commenting.
You know what matters. You have your values in place. Knowing this grounds and gives direction. The students as North Star is a strong metaphor.
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