I’ve got all kinds of things stored up in my brain. Some of it is pretty useless - does anyone really ever need to know the words to the MASH theme? Is it essential to know that Ashton Kutcher had webbed toes when he was born? Does it matter that I can still sing O Come All Ye Faithful in Latin?
One of the things packed into my old noggin’ is an old scripture that says, “So teach us to number our days . . .” As a kid it was a concept that used to freak me out because it was DEFINITELY associated with old age and death. But it has really been running through my brain lately - especially as I started the school year.
What if you only had 172 days to make a lasting impact on someone else? That’s what teaching is. Depending on your school or district, you have somewhere between 170 and 180 days with your students. I even put up a little bulletin board as a reminder to myself this year. I change the number each day.
So far, my students have spent 24 days with me and what have they learned? Have they learned to be curious and brave? Have they learned to consider their path forward? Have I convinced them to think not just about their skills, but also their legacy?
I hope that their days in my classroom are meaningful and not just simply trying to survive that crazy old lady who keeps asking us to make stuff on our computers. I hope that they can see their own power and importance and that they can become a leader and a force of lasting good on this earth.
I also hope they learn how to multiply and read thoughtfully, and write a complete sentence. More than anything else, though, I hope they learn that they CAN learn - given enough effort, time and support that there isn’t anything they can’t tackle. In other words, I want them to see that every single day matters.
And finally, after all those years of reading about it — I finally get what “so teach us to number our days” actually is about. I’ve got to make every day count because when it comes to the school year — I’ve only got so many.
Keep moving forward,