I think there are two kinds of educators. There are those that are educators because they are passionate about a subject and they wanted to share that passion. Then there are those that are educators because they love kids. They could and would teach anything. To generalize, the former tend to be in secondary education, and the latter tend to be in elementary education. However, I believe the great teachers are educators for both reasons.
I have to say, I have generally been the first type. I see the world through a biology lens and as a Jehovah’s Witness is to evangelizing their faith, I am about evangelizing my biological view. But I’m trying to grow as a teacher.
There are students in every classroom that operate around the margins. They are those that have not fit in, been bullied, carry baggage into the classroom that prevents them from engaging with the other students, or in other words, are hidden in plain sight. I wonder how many of these kids I have not seen and not reached out to during my career as a teacher? In what way could I have served as a better mirror for him or her to see them in a new way, instead of in a way that limited their hopes and dreams?
Please watch this Ted Talk by Shane Koyczan and reflect and dialogue with colleagues about those students hiding in plain sight.