Wednesday, August 30, 2006

JOURNAL: August 30, 2006

During the last few days, it seemed like memory played an extraordinarily large role in my life. Case in point: I had my first college class on Monday, and I found it remarkable how many principles of good teaching I recalled as the class proceeded. I loved teaching the class (that first class of the year is always particularly thrilling for me), partly because so many of those great truths about teaching kept coming back to me. After 40 years of teaching, I guess my memory bank is overflowing with ideas, and on Monday night, thankfully, they flowed back in a steadily inspiring way. I’ve also been enjoying an unexpected number of memories as I prepare to teach my middle-school students. Teaching teenagers is a joyful but sometimes bewildering task, and my countless memories of successes (and failures) inevitably make it easier to locate the right path. This past week, I have recalled an unusual number of rock-solid truths that will help me make this a good year for my young students. And finally, as I prepare for a quick visit with my large extended family in St. Louis (including my flourishing 90-year-old mother), it’s odd how many memories are coming back to me. I have eight siblings, four of my own children, and something like 40 nephews and nieces, all of whom have provided me with wonderful memories. I’ve been enjoying them this week, along with the memories of my unforgettable many years as a teacher of children and adults.

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