Have you noticed the masterpieces in your classroom? I am passionate about reflecting on my journey as a teacher and learning and growing and improving my practice every day. To this end I keep a journal where I take a few minutes every day to reflect.
Yesterday I started a new journal. A beautiful Venice journal that one of my friends gave me, knowing my love of Venice and all things Italian. As I flicked through the opening pages of full colour photographs of this iconic place, one particular phrase captured my attention. There was a photo of a classic Venetian sculpture with a caption that read, “Masterpieces everywhere you look.”
Having been to Venice and experienced it firsthand in all its splendor, I know this phrase is absolutely true – there ARE masterpieces everywhere you look. But here is also what I know – this phrase is also true of our classes. Masterpieces are everywhere in our classes. Every student (and I do mean every student, even that tricky one you’re thinking of right now) is a masterpiece in the making. It takes a skilled an insightful teacher to see this, just as it took Michelangelo to see the Statue of David masterpiece inside the hunk of stone.
This week’s assignment:
Today, tomorrow, this week, choose to see each of your students as a masterpiece (cleverly disguised as a hunk of rock). See the important role you play in developing that masterpiece. A kind word here, a friendly smile there, all contributes. You have the privilege of helping to bring the best out in that student.
It’s true, masterpieces ARE everywhere in your classroom. Be the kind of teacher who sees them and plays an active role in their development. It will change the way you teach. And it will change the life of a student.
Enjoy the journey,
And more importantly,
Enjoy the moments.