I am blessed here at school with the opportunity to interact with a number of bright, creative, and fun to be with colleagues. Those interactions, whether in person or via social media, invariably both humble me and enrich me and my teaching. Today I shared with my students a poem written by Antler which my poet/author/Lego-fanatic/musician colleague BJ Best had shared on his Face Book page not long ago when his son entered Kindergarten.
Antler (from his Selected Poems)
“Raising My Hand
One of the first things we learn in school is
if we know the answer to a question
We must raise our hand and be called on
before we can speak.
How strange it seemed to me then,
raising my hand to be called on,
How at first I just blurted out,
but that was not permitted.
How often I knew the answer
And the teacher (knowing I knew)
Called on others I knew (and she knew)
had it wrong!
How I’d stretch out my arm
as if it would break free
and shoot through the roof
like a rocket!
How I’d wave and groan and sigh,
Even hold my aching arm
with my other hand
Begging to be called on.
Please, me, I know the answer!
Almost leaping from my seat
hoping to hear my name.
Twenty-nine now, alone in the wilds,
Seated on some rocky outcrop
under all the stars,
I find myself raising my hand
as I did in first grade
Mimicking the excitement
and expectancy felt then.
No one calls on me
but the wind.”
My first week of teaching has been rewarding. Time to load the car before heading to North Lake for a swim.
I wish everyone in the USA an enjoyable Labor Day holiday.
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