Make It Home

I envisage for this internet space a closed community of teaching professionals who are willing to explore their feelings and fears in this work at a deeper level via honesty with each other when real things happen, good and bad, in our buildings.

The real thrust of this consciously stated new direction for our PLC is a result of my long held belief that only if we are in good mental space can our students be there with us. They mirror us in class. How can they learn if trust and community are not there, if we are not there?

We must make as our number one goal and as our principle operating premise in our classrooms the idea that we can no longer just inhabit classrooms, waiting for the last class period to come to an end, which is the way of powerlessness, and focus rather on enjoying, putting joy into, our instruction.

We do this by building communities first and worrying about the instruction later. We can now bring into our classrooms a richness of community and happiness such as we would want in our own homes for our own dear loved ones.

It’s a shift in how we think about our jobs. We want both the rich and the poor kids whom we teach to know that they have at least one place to go to in the world each day where they can be safe and not judged, where mental health via best instructional practices lay the groundwork for real community in our classrooms, and where they are good at something.

There should be no “trying-to-figure-out-cute-ways-to-get-them-to-learn”. This is pathetic. It depletes us and leads us toward burnout, because we can never find enough of the right activities. Some of us are like junkies in that respect, going to workshop after workshop, collecting activity after activity, when the real key to our success lies in finding a unified group of strategies (a process) and not a bunch of disconnected activities that make us crazy trying to remember and implement them all.

This new initiative implies an entirely new way of teaching, for community, for mental health, as well as for an entirely new way of assessing, for heart, for goodness, for celebrating what he kids have done, not what they haven’t done.

If the emotional needs of our students t are not being met at home, the need for approval, for kindness and for love free of all conditions, then they can be met by us, by how we teach, from our hearts, with love, because we have the key to such a thing – comprehensible input.

So let’s “make it home”, all of us. It’s time.




4 thoughts on “Make It Home”

  1. This is beautiful, Ben. I am back and it is nice to find that this is one of the safe places I can count on as professional. Thank you!

  2. Thank you for this post! 🙂 I’m on a bit of an island (slowly recruiting my colleagues over) but it really helps to have other professional support!

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