Last year we had Taylor Mali visit our school and share his poetry with our faculty, staff, and students. I never got the chance to speak with him personally but I wish I had. If you have seen or heard his poem about teachers, you might have some questions for him – I know I did.
I was told by a great friend to always give the benefit of the doubt to someone – to always believe something good, rather than something bad, when you have the possibility of doing either. My friend would tell me that everyone operates from the best of intentions, and I try to believe that this is true. When working in a school that offers a values laden curriculum, I would hope this to be true.
So, with that said, listen to Taylor’s poem with the benefit of the doubt. Some people say he is too strict, too controlling, too self-centred. I say that he is trying to make a point and is using poetic license to do so. Don’t dwell on the fact that he makes kids sit in silence or not use the bathroom, dwell on the good in his poem.
“I make a difference” – this is the crux of the poem.
How will you make a difference in the life of your students this year?