Thursday, August 18, 2016

to be there for the kids

transitioning back to school

school calls me:
the kids I know,
and the kids I do not yet know,
they all call me,
they call me to ready myself
to know them, to support them,
to help them find paths forward,

logistics call me, too, but not as loudly:
the preparation of my room,
the gathering together of books, materials, plans,

at the heart of my classroom,
I need paper and pen/pencil,
and now simple computers to word process,
and, when I’m lucky, to be there to help with answers
when the students realize the questions
at the heart of where their learning can take them,

as our beloved dog, Eli, butted up 
at the normal limits of his allotted life-span,
I watched him try to jump, the way he had all his life,
and he couldn’t, 
for external reality no longer would allow
who he felt himself within to be,

I want to be a teacher
as long as what I can accomplish with my students
is close to what, inside, I want myself to be with them.

by Henry H. Walker
August 16, ’16

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