In my last post I talked about everyone having their own story. Mine, in short, is that of a young black man, struggling to find his identity and felt he had to get out of his surrounding to find his direction.
It’s important for students to hear your story. Sing it! Shout it! Explain it! Most importantly, own it! If I could, I would wear it everyday like a cool, quirky t-shirt (Urban Outfitters style). Instead, I smile every day! I teach because I love learning and want to motivate and encourage others to love it also.
Learning is like technology, we must do or learn (respectively) it every day or we will miss out.
Let me elaborate. I grew up in a suburban community taking shortcuts, not being held accountable for ANYTHING, and hardly every pushing myself. I went to a mediocre college out of the state where I grew up. I suffered traditional shortcomings that may follow any college student; i.e. not enough money, failing classes, not making adequate progress via credits and matriculation, getting distracted with my environment, etc.
I persisted, graduated, found a career, went back to grad school and continued to LEARN the whole way through. With this learning I felt the need to teach and have been doing so ever since. I feel that learning is like money, if you have too much you can’t every spend it all. I guess that is why philanthropy was invented.
Fast-forward to my current day situation. I have a wonderful family with a wife, 3 kids (one a boy WOO-HOO!), 2 dogs, a cat, and a house. I start attending school this Fall. It is my dream school and I didn’t even know it but my hard work is finally paying off. I have been a teacher entering my 13 year (?) and I have been recognized by more than a handful of students for keeping it real with them.
I wish I had more people to keep it real with me.