Sunday, April 19, 2015

Signs of Spring

The 6 year old I live with has totally enjoyed taking walks over the past month seeking signs of spring.

At first you have to look diligently to notice any change.

Then it becomes more noticeable.

Then we can see that the cycle of life is in full swing.

 Then one day we notice in almost a surprised way that there are real plants all around us.

That's how it works in the classroom, too.  We wonder if our students will learn anything this year.  And then we begin to notice hopeful signs of growth.  And then we see that there is growth and change and progress and maturity.  That is when we know that we have done our jobs.

{I don't know of any standardized test that is able to notice these subtle nuances.  That may be the greatest flaw in the current and pervasive thought in how to evaluate teachers.  Please let me know if you know of a test that notices the little signs of change that give us hope as teachers!}

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Sacred Space

As the school year starts to wind down it becomes more and more important to practice self care.   It is not for the weak.  It is for the wise.  I am feeling really crabby and prickly today.  I know I need to practice self care.  I took myself out to breakfast, and I'm working on plans for my future.  For me that is part of self care.  So is sharing this blog with you.

In January I took myself on a little private retreat at True Nature in Millersburg, Ohio.  One of the things that came out for me in a little finger painting activity is the need for sacred space in my life.  In order to create and be and nourish other people I must leave some sacred space.

What is sacred space?  I think it is a place where we nourish the most sacred and true part of ourselves--our light.  The world is always pressing in on our sacred space.  When we cease to be vigilant it can totally disappear, and in a sense it takes the most amazing part of us with it.

Please take good care of yourself.  Don't let the urgent trump the important anymore than is absolutely essential.  You will slide into summer in a more beautiful space (and maybe not quite as exhausted!) if you honor your sacred space now.