When I told a friend yesterday that I’m hoping to become a more careful teacher, she responded by telling me she thought I was already full of caring. We laughed for a moment, but it was food for thought for me. I confess to never having thought about that sense of the word – the idea that a careful teacher is simply full of caring for the students. I especially noticed the “full” part of it. I liked the idea of a teacher being brimful of straightforward affection for the students, so full of caring that there’s no room or time for pessimism or pettiness. It’s the kind of teaching that turns away from self-interest in favor of finding the best ways to ensure the students’ success. Thanks to my friend’s comment, when I say I want to be a more a careful teacher, I guess I do mean more full of caring. I want to plan each class with the kind of care that is little different from the care that one person has for another because of everyday kindheartedness and compassion. I’ve always felt a sincere concern for my students, but perhaps I should think of it more as a caring for them, a watching out for their welfare, a constant consideration of their hopes and needs. As I carefully make my plans each day, I can look with that kind of care on each small step of the lesson.
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