Archive for March 8th, 2012

“You shall have joy, or you shall have power, said God; you shall not have both”
—Ralph Waldo Emerson

It was a rough morning in the school cafeteria. The first thing out of the lunch lady’s mouth was “Shut up!” and the tall 15 year-old 6th grade bully threatened a younger student. Another duty teacher greeted each child with a “Tuck in that shirt!” Later, a teacher’s aide stopped me and said, “Don’t you just hate breakfast duty? Tomorrow we need to make sure they don’t sit next to their friends.” More rules, no!

I know we have to be strong and disciplined so that absolute mayhem doesn’t break out. But, come on, friends, is all this negativity necessary? We do not know where these kids came from. Did they start the day with a hug and a smile from a loved one? Not likely.

I’m just sayin’, if we spread a little more respect and kindness, we may see a little more in return. In my classroom, I am careful to speak with respect to my students, and I expect them to return that respect to me and to each other. For the most part, it works. We all slip up every once in a while. That’s what I’m sorry is for.

Maybe if we could all practice patience and kindness, our schools and our communities would be better places to be.

Just sayin’…

Link to my students’ Slices

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