Thursday morning for waffles and strawberries at Strawberry Place and the opportunity for a reunion with Val, who has just graduated from SUNY New Paltz.
Just 4 years ago we sat at the same table celebrating her high school graduation Even though we shared the campus, out paths never crossed after an initial coffee when she was brand new to the college experience. But as we catch up she is bubbling over with passion and plans.
I remember Val as an 8th grader with her desk to my left and her smile blazing wide, always asking for more. When I was moving digital and needed a small group of students to join me, Val as a 10th grader couldn’t say no to digital storyteller and took back her seat in my classroom sitting side-by-side with me as I began my own adventure in the digital world.
So as Val sat across from me now preparing for grad school in New York City it was no surpsied to see her moving along on her path, clear and focused and passionate about her life, about learning. Of course she has the support and love of her mom and family encouraging her.
This is what is means to reap the fruits of teaching, but we need the time to reflect on the process. I don’t think a high stakes test focus could produce the passion in Val, do you?