Loving teaching is the mark of being a dedicated educator. In the three vignettes that follow, I wish to show the transformative power of teaching. Some of the examples are from my own experience and some are from my colleagues. The common thread among all is love. As I walked to my usual spot at the back of the bus, I slung the box of papers I carried with me from the night before. I would ride this bus into downtown Baltimore and then catch another one into the outer reaches of the city.
I would repeat this process each day until I got a car—nearly three months into my first year of teaching. My early mornings and late nights were filled with planning and all the time in between was jammed with earnest attempts to put the two together to form cohesive instruction. It was in this process that I learned the true hours of operation for a teacher—from the moment you wake up, to the moment you go to sleep.
Even in all of the educational leadership roles since then, my commitment to a process of improvement that has been the strongest lever of support in my career. Parker, can I ask you a question? I have taught disruptive students, unruly students, perfect students, hurting students and every other type of student in between. What touches them is not the teachers' expertise, but the approach. The love and empathy in your heart for who they are is the sanctifying quality of transformative instruction.
His eyes narrow and focused, his lips pursed and tense, his fist balled tightly and securely, he said this to me through tears.
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My heart breaks every time I have to break up a fight or see a student in distress. I feel such loss whenever a student reveals that they cannot read or write well, despite being in school for over 10 years. These heart-breaking moments keep me connected to the fight for improving the outcomes of children - both educationally and socially.
Activist and author Bryan Stevenson says that 'we must become proximate to pain to build the capacity to help the least of these among us. What may be most absent from the education reform conversation is a focus on the love of teaching itself.
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Not a love of the public schools versus charter schools. Not a love of one political perspective over another. Not a love of one solution at the expense of another. I'm talking about a fundamental love of teaching itself. If we all embrace and appreciate the hour-by-hour, year-by-year sacrifice educators make to ensure that children from every zip code, ethnicity, perspective and orientation get a quality education, maybe we can fall in love with the promise of teaching all over again. What will save teaching is teaching.
So too, a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. But a Samaritan, as he travelled, came where the man was; and when he saw him, he took pity on him. He went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine.
Then he put the man on his own donkey, brought him to an inn and took care of him. The next day he took out two denarii and gave them to the innkeeper. The Samaritans and Jews were sworn enemies and so for the Samaritan to show such love was even more amazing.
Jesus wanted everyone to be like the Samaritan. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.
The Meanings of Love in the Bible | Desiring God
It does not dishonour others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Good Samaritan , greatest commandments , love. What, even the Romans who have come to occupy our land? How are we supposed to love them? In the Old Testament if a man […]. Ever listened to a lecture or a speech or even a sermon? What was it like? Did you enjoy it? And yet this was like no other […]. What is true love? Is there a difference between physical and unconditional love?
What does the Bible mean when it says that God is love? Love is a very complex issue and yet it is at the very heart of the Christian faith. How do Christians decide what is right and what is wrong? Jesus taught that there are two commandments that should be at the […]. Parables are special stories that Jesus told to help teach us how we should live.
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Many would agree that increasing diversity and multiculturalism is a positive […]. How often have you been tempted to call someone a less than polite name?
Love and Teaching: A Transformational Connection
Have you ever been so angry that you lost control of your words and actions? Anger is a dangerous thing and it has been said that it can often become our […]. It can be very easy to pick fault with a person or judge them for something they have done or said. There was a time when the Jewish leaders brought a woman to Jesus. In the first one, a shepherd has a hundred sheep and then goes looking for one who wanders off. In the second one, a woman who […].