I bought the hanging/plaque pictured above and just recently placed it in my office. I know it took me almost 3 years to decide to start decorating, but it’s finally starting to come together. I bought this particular piece mainly because it was on sale, but I finally hung it up because I believe in its message. Hope is what we have; hope is what we give; and even more, hope is what we must create in our students.
I spoke with a student today who had gotten into considerable trouble. I counseled this student as I normally do, but I then pointed to this sign and said I believe in that word. I told her that I have hope that she can do better; that I have hope that she can correct her serious misdeed; that I have hope she can learn from this and become stronger. But I also told her that hope without a lot of blood, sweat, and tears behind it is worth very little. True hope must be backed by full effort and a lot of hard work. Oddly enough, I had a conversation with Mr. Blakney during lunch, wherein he told me about the gist of his lecture he gave to his fourth period class: to make it in this life you either get very lucky or you work your butt off. (I think that is how he put it; if not, I am sorry Mr. Blakney.)
That’s what we do here. Every time you make your students work a little harder, you give them hope. Every time you make them stretch their abilities, you give them hope. Every time you raise your expectations and give them support to reach them, you give them hope. A teacher is a hope builder. We do teach our students our content, but just as importantly, we teach them the value of hard work and the hope that springs from it.
I think Michael put it better than me. Watch and see, and maybe show it to your students. http://youtu.be/_-EyRUgp9Mk