Last Friday, I accidentally kicked off a theme that carried through for a week. The challenge of changing the world. When I wrote it, i did not know that it would resonate with people so much…one of those people being me. It has stuck with me this week. The idea that we, especially we teachers, can change the world is a powerful idea. Not only is it powerful, it is true.
Anyone person can change the world. Teachers have a chance to multiply their change almost exponentially…only the change is done person-to-person and one student at a time. You, me, and every other teacher needs to realize this. It is really what we do. It is a part of the job, It is really part of the focus of what we do. We influence students. We help them to learn, think, and stand on their own.
Students’ personal change while they are in our class, that change that will allow them to face a world that does not yet exist, is the goal. The content is not the goal..though it is the medium through which we teach the skills they need for the world ahead of them…it is the means to the end, not the end itself. We are planting seeds for the future, and the subject and details we teach are just the outer layer of the seed.
Students. They are our “clients.” They are who we work for. They are the concentration area of our job. They are the center of the plans we make for what we do. They are the end goal of our work. They are the work we do. Pure and simple. Students are the change the world needs. We help them learn to be that change. Period. The end. Students.
So…we change the world by focusing on students.
The hardest part. We wait. We wait for the world to change. We wait for the seeds to grow. We wait for the plant to mature. We wait for the adult plant to spread seeds of its own. It is the life cycle of plants. It is the life cycle of teaching. It is the life cycle of world change.
It is more than waiting though. When I say that we wait on the world to change, I am not talking about waiting like in the John Mayer song. It is not sitting back and waiting for something to happen. It is not waiting for the world to change itself. We, as teachers, don’t wait that way…and we should teach our students not to wait that way.
We proactively wait. We keep digging. We keep planting more seeds. We keep working on changing the world. We influence more and more people. We connect with more and more students (especially the difficult ones). We keep on going day after day after day. We never give up trying until start seeing some change in some way every where we look.
We work to cause the conditions of change. We wait for change. While we wait, we cause more conditions for change. We wait. While we wait, we…well, you get my drift here. We keep going.
The world WILL change. You are a part of it. To quote from the Kid President song I shared last week, “The world can be better, and you’ll be the cause.” Change is coming. We just have to work and wait….and “keep going, keep going, keep going.”
You an agent of change for AWESOME…because you are awesome. Keep going. Just because you don’t see change, it doesn’t mean that it is not happening. You are doing what it takes! Keep doing what you do, you amazing teacher, you! Keep going. Keep on teaching, Teacher! Oh, and keep going (did I mention that?)!
2 thoughts on “Waitin’ on the World to Change”
I enjoyed your post. I had to read it because of the title. I like the spin you did, about how we, as teachers, often do need to wait for the world to change from the students we have influenced. With my 5th grade GT class we listen to John Mayer’s song and discuss that this is not the way to change. Then we listen to Michael Jackson’s The Man in the Mirror and discuss how they need to be the change…and I share Gandhi quote about change. This year added video from YouTube called The Lost Generation. Made for powerful lesson as we begin our passion research. Now I will watch, mentor, guide, and wait to see how these students will work to change their world.
That is awesome! Thank you for sharing what you are doing with your students along these same lines. We have to motivate them to start thinking about the world and their future and part in it, don’t we? I like that you used “Man in the Mirror.” I thought about using that as the theme song last week. Maybe that will be the one for this week. 🙂
You are awesome, Teacher Linda! Keep on teaching, inspiring, mentoring, and guiding, Teacher!