Though spring is not officially here, yesterday, spring sprang in 219. No, no flowers in bloom or trees in bud, just empty seats. In school, we know it’s spring when our kids are gone, away at myriad sports and activities, creating vacancies and–for teachers and students–hardships.
For teachers, it presents a nearly-daily dilemma in the coming, closing weeks of the year as we struggle to juggle our instructional planning amidst absences, trying to select the best days to get to key content so as to reach as many kids as possible. But, in reality, though we do our best, it often becomes mission impossible, and we throw up our hands and out our plans, and we simply roll with the punches. Today, will be one of those days in 219. And while it bums and stresses me out, I accept it as simply being what it is and don’t project my frustration at anyone, especially the kids. It’s not their fault.
Indeed, for students, it presents a hectic, stressful existence where they seek to satisfy multiple aspects of their lives, not the least of which is class and what they miss when they are gone. Yes, they chose the activity, and yes choice brings responsibility, but they are also being pushed to be involved, to round themselves well, and to grasp that school is not only about academics. And as they are being pushed, the very people who are doing the pushing should also be doing some giving, cutting the kids some slack. As an alternate meaning of the word suggests, a spring absorbs movement as it is pushed or pulled, it gives when pressure is applied–in a word, it is flexible. And that is what our kiddos need this time of year. They need us to be understanding and flexible, not rigid and indifferent.
Fortunately, many teachers morph into modes of flexibility this time of year, but sadly not all do, some taking out their irritation on the kids, adopting rigid responses to a season not static. Spring “moves” whether we like it or not; our best bet for ourselves and our kids is just to move with it.
We’ll be moving a lot in 219, lots of pushing and pulling going on as we together embrace the season, the precursor to the end we all love and need: summer.
Happy Friday, all. Yet another precursor that puts some spring in our step as we near another end that we all love and need: the weekend.
- Choice to Change: Morning Minutes, March 10, 2016
- Keepin’ the Day Job: Morning Minutes, March 14, 2016