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what’s the difference between good + great?

May 4, 2017 , , , , ,

How come 2 teachers can say exactly the same thing, and one will have little or no effect, and the other will create ripples and inspire action?

What is it?

It’s love; students need to be loved. This can be hard-arse, or playful, connective, or simple. But they will know if they are seen, valued, and heard by you. Nice words don’t do it. You can say all the nice + inspiring words that you want, but that won’t affect change. It’s the resonance of you truly loving them for who they are, however you do it, that will affect change.

It’s seeing them; it’s calling BS when they are not giving what they can, extending themselves, fighting the good fight, being more. It’s seeing through the bravado and pain to the tenderness inside. It’s hearing one thing, and interpreting it as something very different. It’s unfurling their defences in a way only a teacher can; not a parent, not a friend, not a boyfriend or girlfriend, but a teacher.

It’s being an authentic role model; you can’t love students without being a good person yourself. When you sign up to be a teacher, you sign up for life. You model good values, vulnerability, how to rise up from failure, joy, optimism, hard-assery, determination, grit, love, tenderness, and everything in between. You model the marrow of life, in full colour, in your own way.

It’s been optimistic about life; about having an optimistic + realistic point of view. When you are living with hope and agency, your students might see the world and living a good life as “possible”, too.

Students hear your words, but they listen with their eyes and hearts. In so many ways, they are far wise than us, in their own haphazard and angsty way!

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