This has been an awesome year. I really enjoy teaching. It is such a blessing to watch students grow and understand new concepts. When given a chance, everyone wants to learn something new and to be the best person each of us can be and will become. My family wanted to see “The Greatest Showman” for awhile. So I decided to rent a copy last night. I always like watching some of the extra material and since I liked the songs in the movie, I watched the extra part on the songs. Keala Settle is the singer who sings “This is Me.” She had only sung in public as part of a church choir. They had to persuade her to sing this song, but once she decided to audition for singing this song, she succeeded spectacularly. I know that you can easily watch the clips from the movie, but I wanted to show you the first time that Keala was brave enough to get out from behind the podium. You can do for yourself, what Keala was about to do for herself.
The reason I chose this particular song is to show each of my students what each can achieve through being true to your internal compass and being the best person you can be. The theme for this year was grit. In some ways, I hate to see the semester end. I believe I have learned as much, if not more, than any of my students. I started the school year in August, being hired just in time to start teaching my classes. The first semester, I had two high school math classes, two high school computer science classes, and one middle school computer class. There was curriculum for the high school classes, but none for the middle school class. They did have a book of lessons for the middle school class, so the first semester I used it the best I could. The second semester, I decided to create my own class. I believe it went well and the students learned something interesting. This summer, I am working with the new middle school teacher to develop the curriculum for 6th, 7th, and 8th grade computer science classes. It will be nice having a full summer to do this development. It will also be nice to have someone with whom to work. I will enjoy teaching full time at the high school, but I will miss my middle school students. I will look forward to seeing them when then come to the high school. I will also be working with the new teaching during the school year to help where I can. I am looking forward to the new year.
This last paragraph is a note to all of my students: You have all been good students. I know, especially to the middle school students, it has been an interesting challenge to make the class interesting without making over challenging. You have all done a great job (as long as the homework is turned into Infinite Campus). As you continue on with your education or enter the labor force, I wish each of you all the success possible. The facts you have learned may be fleeting, but any techniques you have learned for gaining and retaining knowledge and skills will last a lifetime. Be true to yourself, follow your inner compass. When you are aligned with whom you truly are, you will succeed. There will be hardships along the way, that is part of life. I know for me, it is where I have learned the most. Develop your own “This is Me” attitude (and maybe even song). At the end of the “This is Me” video, notice how all the people (including the audience) were singing. Each person was confident in who s/he is, so that each person can work with others to build a better place for everyone. As you leave for the summer, decide who you want to be and strive to be that person. As you do, you will discover so many wonderful things about yourself and the environment in which you live. Also, remember those around you to help them grow to be the best person they can be. It is so much more fun to have good friends who are growing along with you. Have a great summer. May you each have your million dreams come true in your lifetime.