Tidbits for Teachers are regular SHORT inspirations and tips to bring hope and encouragement to teachers in all settings. I hope to give you a shot in the arm and remind you why you chose this career in the first place.
Be the Salt
Are you bored yet? The weeks between Labor Day and Thanksgiving seem to crawl by. The only weeks that are slower are the ones between Christmas and spring break. It is the long monotonous days that tempt you to fall into a rut. It is also the long monotonous days that you have uninterrupted instructional time, meaning they can be some of the most productive days of the year. The trick is to keep the daily grind interesting enough that it doesn’t bore your students to tears. In other words, you have to be the salt, and spice things up.
• Salt is used as seasoning, to enhance flavor. In a classroom, you are the salt. You are the one who brings out the natural “flavors” of your students’ individuality. You are the one who blends them together to make a cohesive whole, using their distinct differences to create classroom magic. Boring isn’t a part of that creation. Being the salt requires innovation and passion that spills out and makes the whole room interesting.
• Salt is also a preservative. It makes things last longer. You preserve learning and make it a part of every minute of the day. It doesn’t have to be a formal lesson for students to learn something. Teaching them how to get along with one another, preserves peace. Cheering them on, preserves their confidence. Correcting their behavior, preserves respect. In the midst of long weeks, you have the ability to be a preservative as you go throughout the days.
• Salt has healing properties. You see the wounds, and you know the exact amount of salt to apply to bring healing and not more pain. You stop bullies. You encourage effort. You wipe away tears. You teach emotional health. It’s not in your plans, but you do it anyway because you know that smart kids don’t get as far as emotionally healthy ones. Every classroom needs some salt to survive the long days in the trenches. Every teacher has the ability to be the salt.
Salt is good for seasoning. But if it loses its flavor, how do you make it salty again? You must have the qualities of salt among yourselves and live in peace with each other.” Mark 9:50