On The Unbroken Chain Of Teachers

I learned today that one of my former students has been hired to teach at a high school where I once briefly taught as well. I had gladly given her encouragement and a reference, and so she made a point of letting me know how excited she was. She will now be able to help a new class full of young people make their way into adult life, just as she had been helped many years ago in another classroom in another school, just as I had been helped.

I sometimes marvel that it takes a teacher to make a teacher. Every teacher learned how to learn and learned how to teach because of their own teachers, and so there is an unbroken chain all the way back to our beginnings, all the way back to the first teachers.

She’s not the first of my students to decide to take this on, but it occurs to me that she might turn out to be the last. My heart is so full for her, and for the young people she will meet as soon as this summer is over. She’s smart, and savvy, and eager, and she has the courage and patience it takes to make a great teacher, and so I think she’s going to make great things happen for kids.

I won’t be there, but they’ll have school. She will stand up before them, and tell them her name, and ask them theirs, and so they will begin. They’ll have a good first day with her, and then a good second day, and eventually this will become a good school year. She will share her heart with them, and they will share theirs with her, and the circle will close and open again.