Thursday, October 13, 2011


I got to thinking about the Internet the other day, the way it’s always there, just waiting for us to “tune in” to it, and it reminded me of the mighty power that passes the time in my English classes, patiently waiting for us to tune in to its soft but far-reaching influence. I guess I’m speaking of whatever it is that puts together our thoughts and feelings – whatever it is that makes thinking and feeling such profoundly revamping and replenishing activities. Where do they all come from, the ideas and sentiments that stream through the lives of my students and me as we work through a Shakespeare sonnet or a Jane Austen story? Where does this power have its home – the power that provides my classes with whatever useful lessons might be learned in 8th and 9th grade English? When I muse over these questions, I sometimes do think of the Internet, the way it connects us, with a simple click of a key, to an almost infinite source of ideas – a source that seems strangely similar to that which produces the powerful ideas and feelings that flow among us in my classes. It’s so easy – accessing the widespread wisdom of the Internet, or tuning in to the thoughts of all time and space in my small classroom. For the Web, we simply touch a keypad, and for inspirations in English class, we just swing open the doors of our minds and make room for the millions of thoughts forever waiting there.

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