My first two months as a seventh grade teacher have been indescribable. I’ve taught my kids how to add integers, the structure of an essay, and how to conduct an experiment. We’ve created human number lines, posters, and everything in-between. I’ve learned more in the past two months than my whole life combined, and I’m not in any way referring to my lesson plan content. Every day my kids remind me what it means to be a good listener. They make me laugh when things are stressful, and their genuine kindness often leaves me speechless. They’ve reinforced to me how important it is to keep a promise, and how even the smallest of gestures can move mountains.
My favorite part of this experience has nothing to do with content. Instead, it’s the relationships that I’ve formed with each and every one of my kids. It’s the feeling I get when they ask to spend their lunch period with me. It’s about our conversations that take place outside of the classroom, both good and bad. It’s the rush I felt the first time I heard the words “Ms. D, you’re my favorite teacher.” There’s truly nothing that I would trade these moments for.
While I hope that my kids will end the school year writing effective essays and knowing how to solve equations with ease, I have much greater goals for them. I want them to leave my classroom with the courage to ask questions. I want them to be confident in their abilities, and posses the desire and strength to change the world. I want them to know that there is at least one person in the world that believes in them, even when they feel like there’s nobody to fit that role. They are smart, capable, sensitive, curious and brave. They have helped shape me to become a better teacher than I was on day one, and they’ve also helped me to become a better person.
My room might look like an ordinary classroom to you, but it is much more than that. It’s full of future politicians, inventors, writers and artists. My babies will one day change the world, and I’ll be standing on the sidelines cheering them on.
I never thought that my life would revolve around 29 kids under the age of 12, but now that it does, I wouldn’t have it any other way.