ONE TEACHER'S ALPHABET
S is for Spacious
I would like my English classes to have a spacious feel to them, in terms not of the size of my classroom (it’s fairly small) but of the size of the attitude my students and I bring to it. I would like us to have an attitude that is generous or large in area or extent – a roomy attitude, if you will. I would hope that we would always have room in our minds for any lessons taught, any thoughts mentioned, any feelings shared. Instead of thinking of ourselves as small, isolated, and cramped individuals, I hope we see ourselves as equal partakers in a process (called education) that is harmonious, enduring, and – most important -- infinite. There are, in fact, no boundaries in the educational process, including boundaries between those involved in the process. There is no discreet “me” over here and “them” over there, Student A in this desk and Student B in that desk, totally separate from each other. All learning happens in a boundless space, a measureless area where innumerable ideas, like loaded spaceships, pass freely back and forth among minds. If my students and I bring to class an awareness of this boundlessness of the learning process, our learning will be wondrous indeed. We’ll know there’s room for every idea and every emotion, every hunch and every guess. We’ll go about our English work in a spacious atmosphere of grateful acceptance.