Today, fill your cup of life with sunshine and laughter.

05 October 2006


Why does it matter?

they need a person in their lives
who listens
to what they have to say
with an unjudgemental ear,
even if they aren't really saying anything at all.

the loneliness of the human condition
is more
than they can assimilate
and they need to know
that someone cares about them and that they aren't really alone.

But really,
why does it matter?

the only person who smiles at them all day
is the one
who greets them each morning
and encourages them to strive for and achieve things
that they didn't think they were capable of doing.

they need to know that being firm
doesn't mean
being physically agressive
or verbally offensive, or abusive in any way,`
and that they can feel safe even when an adult is angry.

Honestly though,
why does what you do matter?

they need to know that someone sees them
as they are
and accepts them anyway,
regardless of their behaviour or their attitude
and will treat them equally and without prejudice.

And sometimes,
they need someone who will make them accountable
for their actions and deeds,
who will teach them things they can't learn in books,
who will guide them to become a responsible adult.

Why does what I do matter?
Because I am a teacher.
It's not just a job, it's who I am.

- Corinna Masson, B. Mus., B. Ed., M.Mus.
le 5 octobre 2006 (14h05 pm)

Today is important to me. It justifies who I consider myself to be. There are few jobs on the planet that can be as rewarding as this, or as frustrating. My rewards are not financial. They are the little things that you don't even notice at the time. And they mean more than mere dollars and cents ever could.

During my noon, which I frequently take at my desk so I can keep the music room open for kids to come in and play music or chat or study, I will always have visitors who just want to chat. You don't always need to give advice. You don't even always need to respond. They just like to make a connection.

Yesterday, my neuralgia came out of remission. It is a rather painful malady, and I was unable to hide my discomfort from the children. But today was an extraordinary day. I noticed that my classes were somewhat subdued. What I totally missed was the reason for it. During the course of noon hour, it was brought to my attention that my students, being concerned for my welfare, had spread it about the school to be careful of my health, and not cause me any stress.

Two girls, that I don't even teach any more, made fudge as a treat for me. Some grade nine boys (!) made me a card. And my crazy, frustrating, marvelous grade 10 reading class wrote me letters in their journals telling me what a difference I was making in their lives. I never realized they felt that way. I didn't know for sure that I was reaching them. If you read my blog regularly, you know I was questioning the validity of what I do. I think I can safely say that my students have put my mind at ease. And I don't think anyone else could have done it so well.


Anonymous said...

A Hundred Years From Now -

A hundred years from now, it will not matter what kind of car I drove
or how large my bank account was.
But the world may be a better place because I was important in the life of a child.

unknown source

Remember that as a teacher you make a great impact on the life of a child. What your kids did for you shows you what a wonderful person you are.

Lee Ann

Anonymous said...

Parents are often credited with the success of their children but what people fail to realize is that teachers are the ones on the frontlines and in the trenches everyday. Don't get me wrong, parents are vital to their childrens upbringing butit is the parents who trust teachers enough to send their kids to everyday!
Coco, don't ever doubt the influence you have. Remember, kids are always watching...especially when you think they aren't!

Anonymous said...

Hurray for teachers! Both my father and SIL are teachers and I know what they struggle through. I'm glad you got some positive feedback :)



Sueann said...

Coco, my dear friend, honestly, I felt as if you wrote this about me...not being a "Drama Queen"....
The only person in my young life that supported my writing was my 12th grade English Teacher. He urged me to write something every day. When I was published, he was the first person I wrote to. He called me! Told me how proud he was of please know how very much you mean to your kids!

Anonymous said...

It's amazing when something so important takes place and you finally figure out, without a doubt, what you should do. Sometimes just waiting and being aware of things presents the answer to you.

Julie Rose

Anonymous said...

Coco, it's because of wonderful teachers like you that we become who we are meant to be.

Encouragement, discipline, honesty and faith. What a wonderful combination.

My mother is a teacher, and I see all she goes through. You guys have a thankless job on most days, but it's on days like the one you described that it's all worthwhile.

Happy Teachers Day to my (second) favourite teacher.

PS - What a wonderful poem. Please let me know if I can pass that on to my mother.

Anonymous said...

Man....all I can say is


Never ever doubt that you are influencing these lives and that as a teacher or an administrator you will continue to do that...


Sorry it took your Neuralgia attack to make you see this, but I guess with the pain comes the joy.

Anonymous said...

From the mind of Meribah:

Coco, never forget that teaching is one of the most important jobs in the world! I'm so glad your students showed you how much you mean to them. You've obviously had a major impact on them, in a positive way. Good on yuh!