This is my space to rant and rave, vent and vex about education, my passion. I am calling it "Mining for Hidden Gems" because of the above quote and because as a teacher, my job is to look for those gems. The real valuable ones are not usually on the surface. You have to dig deep to find them.
I am also borrowing from Katherine Bomer's wonderful book Hidden Gems: Naming and Teaching From the Brilliance in Every Student's Writing. It has changed the way I look at not just student work but students themselves and all people around me.
Sunday, February 20, 2011
A Sliver Of Something Different
Most of our job as teachers is really about showing that sliver of something different to our students. Who knows, maybe that novel, that field trip, that special guest, that personal interest we took in them, will be the one factor that tips the balance in their lives towards a positive future. We have no control over what goes on in their homes. But we cannot afford to waste one moment of the time they are in our classrooms with benign busy work.
A few weeks ago, I saw a student who knew me briefly as a substitute teacher in her class when she was in fourth grade. She was working in a restaurant where I was picking up some food for my family. Even though she is now a young woman old enough to work, I recognized her and smiled. She came over to me and said: "I remember you! You were our substitute teacher and you read us that book, Esperanza Rising." Children do remember!