Carrying a Spark

Today was one giant meeting stack.  I had an hour at the start of the day for “Feedback and Planning” (yes, I’m still sticking to this goal) and then I met with a leadership team followed by our Assistant Headmaster for Curriculum and Professional Development, our Professional Development Coordinator, and a group that is working as a kind of skunk works for curricular innovation.  In between, I also met with a few students.

I sat down tonight with the intention of seeing if I could pull a common thread from all these different meetings, and I’m happy to report that I found one.  In each of these meetings, at one time or another, at least one person in the room was working skillfully and effortfully to keep a spark, emanating from a student, alive.

In short, at least one person in the room had seen something in a student, a light of sorts, and wanted to make sure that it continued, that the light didn’t go out due to the exigencies of school, life, and world.

When I think of a great educator now, a new picture is forming.  I see a person walking through a windy stretch of land with his/her palms cupped together, and inside, a tiny spark.  He/she is carrying the spark from one point to another, not quite sure where the journey will end but quietly intent on making sure the spark is burning a little bit brighter when the handoff happens.

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