Celebrate: The Year To Come

celebrate link up

The process of learning is difficult. We ride alongside learners. We come with love and passion for what we know to be true and valuable. We want to share this with our students. There are times when that love is clearly felt and then reflected back on us.  And there are times when things fall flat or even go backward. When what you thought was going to be great, but wasn’t. When you just didn’t have it. Or when someone else diid something they shouldn’t. And then we as teachers are left with the student who is hurt or by ourselves, trying to figure it out.  

Today I celebrate the year in front of me.  Today I celebrate students that make me look forward to the learning and growth to come. They grow so much every year. I am lucky to be a part of it.

Mark hates, hates, hates reading a book a week. That’s what he wrote on his student survey yesterday. While this is clearly not what I wanted to hear, it made me smile. The fact that he was clearly stating what he felt, not what I wanted to hear, made me celebrate. I can trust what he tells me is the truth. This is something we can build on.

Jordan loves, loves, loves food. He is a thinker, but sometimes it doesn’t look like it.  He gets in trouble on the yard. Doesn’t do his homework. Sometimes refuses to do what he is asked to do. Sometimes he out and out lies. It doesn’t look like it, but he wants to learn, to do well. I know it and we have a team of adults at school to support him. We have this year, the last year before middle school. This year to build strategies to support him and how he approaches learning.

Jessica came to me at lunch. Mrs. Harmatz, can I talk to you about something, starts the conversation. She goes on to tell me how her dad said she wasn’t a good writer or reader.  That she writes like a kindergartener and doesn’t understand what she is reading.  Those words knocked the wind out of me. Where this child falls on the continuum of 5th grade ability isn’t the point. It doesn’t matter.  It seemed in this moment she just wanted to tell me this. And as I stumbled around trying to say that she was amazing without undermining her parent, she goes on to say I will be better I will work harder because you can’t give up, I will be resilient.  As painful as this situation is, I celebrate the fact that she came to me. That we have a year together, to grow her and her family towards a positive mindset.

Today I celebrate the year to come.




8 thoughts on “Celebrate: The Year To Come

  1. What a year these students will have with you guiding them, showing them all the positives they have within themselves. They will be different thinkers by the end of this year. You inspire!

  2. WOW! These interactions demonstrate the trust you’ve already built with your students!!! I love these celebrations and I look forward to witnessing the growth in these students as the year progresses!!!

  3. Your recognition of these differences counts a lot, Julieanne. What trust this last young girl already has in you to share her father’s words. Sometimes I thought my most important task was to help parents love their child. Hard to say that, but it was true, and leading them to see all the accomplishments was a constant goal. Good luck this year; I know the students will thrive with you!

    • Lucky students, lucky you! You’re off to a fabulous beginning together! I love an honest response, it makes me chuckle and challenges me to figure out how to reach that student. I love that your student used the word resilient, kudos to you for teaching that important word.

  4. Whoa. Much in this post stopped me. I reread many sentences and just let them sink in. “We ride alongside learners.” <– That is so beautifully expressed. And oh young Jessica. Thank goodness you have each other. An important year awaits.

  5. It’s not going to be easy and you can’t give up – this knowledge gives you a good start and helps you keep going when things get tough. For these children it is important to know that you are there for them – to listen and to support. Together you will make the year a good one.

  6. Building community and getting to know so much about each of the students in your care is worthy of celebration. How lucky your students are to have such a connected, curious and available teacher.

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