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It’s late morning on a Wednesday. I have a string of meetings and a stack of paperwork. Right now, I’m thinking of the classroom. I’m remembering the way we would do a maker project on the day before Thanksgiving. We were learning, but it never quite felt like school. It was almost sneaky, maybe even quietly subversive.

Right now, I’m thinking of the teacher candidates in my cohort. I’m thinking about the next generation of teachers who will step into the classroom and change the world. They’ll make mistakes. Lessons will flop. They will yell or cry or maybe both. There will be gut-wrenching and soul-wrenching moments. And there will be exhaustion. Tons of it.

But still . . .

They will show up again on a Monday morning when they feel like they have nothing left to give and they will teach with passion and wisdom and humility. They will love kids who society deems as unloveable. They will ditch the scripted curriculum and take their students off-road on an adventure. They will refine their craft. They will build empathy and creativity and problem-solving in a way that most people never realize.

Because they are teachers.

If you’re a teacher, thank you for what you do. Thank you for helping kids fall in love with reading by finding fascinating novels and interesting informational texts. Thank you for helping kids who are afraid of math realizing that numbers can be a playground, too. Thank you for helping students find their voice in writing and in multimedia composition. Thank you for raising up the next generation of scientists and engineers by teaching the art of inquiry and observation and experimentation. Thank you for raising up critical thinking citizens and for taking students on an exploration of previous eras and times.

It’s no secret that the national climate is pretty dark right now. There’s a lot of hurt and anger and sarcasm and . . . well . . . darkness. But you’ve been a light. You have been a refuge for students in the midst of all of this.

So, I thought I would share a sketchy video I created last year.

Happy Thanksgiving.


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John Spencer

My goal is simple. I want to make something each day. Sometimes I make things. Sometimes I make a difference. On a good day, I get to do both.More about me

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