62. That's the magic number. For one of my assignments today, the students are going to teach something to anyone they choose. They are to be the "Miracle Worker" in keeping with Annie Sullivan of Helen Keller fame. For an added spark, if the person they teach will write a couple paragraphs about the experience, I will offer them an additional 20 bonus points.
One boy told me, "I was going to teach my dad to upload a picture on Facebook but you probably can't read his writing. I just smiled and said quietly, "Well, Aaron, I read your dad's handwriting in 1980, I think I can read it now!" I went on at their insistence to identify most of their parents as former studnts. One boy whose dad has passed away was touched to learn I could still quote a poem his dad wrote in my first freshman English class. He looked down at his desk and looked like he might cry, but he softly said, "My dad wrote a poem?" Yeah, it was a moment. I later counted and discovered I have taught 62 of their parents total... a little over half of my kids!!!
Later in a different class communication broke down and one student's temper flared. Words that should never be spoken from a student came out in class and eventually the principal sent him home. That was a different kind of moment... an uncomfortsble one that leaves me still wishing I had thought of some other way to handle the situation... Teachers always have these kinds of days. We rise up the mountain and slip down the ravines. Sometimes our little chickies get along and sometimes we do NOT!