Thursday, May 03, 2007

While I was watching the trees in the park sway in the breeze the other day, I began to wonder why I almost never watch my students in the same way. Why aren’t my individual students as fascinating to me as these beautiful, blossoming trees? I must have watched one particular tree for a good five minutes, just quietly appreciating the way its branches swung and dipped as the winds passed through. Have I ever paid attention to an individual student for that long -- I mean, just sat still and observed a student, really watched and noticed and scrutinized him or her? The answer is no, and it bothers me. Why is a tree more interesting to me than a student? Why do I say to myself, “That tree is astonishing!”, when I rarely say that about a student who is going about his or her work in my classroom. Yes, I compliment students on their class work, but I almost never stand back and simply admire the magnificence of a particular student. I find that very strange.

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