There are times that my teaching focus gets off the real prize.  By my nature I have a need to succeed; so when something or someone is not meeting expectations it can become a near obsession for me.  This can be good as I don’t give up on kids very easy, but sometimes I can get so focused on what is not working that I let it drive my emotions. 

The kids in the photo are a constant reminder for me about how special my job really is; Meghan, Julia, Tiernan, Natalie, Erica, and Kylie (the guy in the grey Tecumseh sweatshirt is my teaching partner Tony Sturgeon).  These kids have become like family to me; I love each of them.  Even now some eight years after teaching them we still see each other.  We have read a book together, The Prophet by Kahlil Gibran and Tuesdays with Morrie by Mitch Albom.   We meet for coffee and catch up.  Each of these kids has grown up into such neat adults.  They have traveled the world and have achieved great success in college.  It means a lot to me that despite all they have going on they think of me once and awhile. 

My lesson from these kids is that the 12 and 13 year olds I stand in front of every school day are someday going to grow up and in some cases become people that matter…that matter to me and matter in the world.