Sitting silently and looking out over the misty skies above Mystic this morning, I thought of the many times when a mist seems to make its way across my teaching – times when all I can see as I’m standing before my students is the smog of imprecise lesson plans and sleepy students. These are the days when doing my job seems similar to searching for a certain stone in a vast and hazy forest. Try as I might, on those confused classroom days I see no signals ahead to help me make the most out of whatever lesson plan I had prepared. All is confusion and indecision. I guess what I need to remember is that, like this misty morning, things will slowly sort themselves out and light will let itself through. By noon today, probably none of this mist will remain, and a restful but rousing sunshine will be spread around us. In its always leisurely way, nature will alter our world from gray to something closer to gold, and I’ll probably be walking a sunny beach by three. The lesson in all this? When I’m teaching this year, and a wearying, misty kind of confusion drops down upon my students and me, I need to simply sit back and be patient and prepare for some eventual and inevitable mental sunshine. It always comes, just like the sun always shows itself, sooner or later, in my small town beside the shore.
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