There is always so much to hope for, there will always be hope for a better tomorrow and hope for a promised future. So my hope is that we continue to put forth action in making sure every tomorrow is better than yesterday. We don’t give up hope, because this journey for change is just that. It changes what we continually work to do, and we must always have hope to keep that journey going.
My first year of teaching, I thought I was going to quit. I didn’t think I was going to make it. However, with a switch in school culture, by end of the year, I knew this is what I wanted to do. I loved teaching, and I was passionate about it. There were certain topics that came before teaching I liked, but I did not love them. In life it is important to find something that you are passionate about.
It took years of self-care, appreciating my work and not taking criticism personally. Nowadays, there is one important truth that I live by- my students know I care about them and that is all that matters. I ask myself two critical questions at the end of every day: Are my students safe? Do they know they are loved? We are with our students every day for many hours. This doesn’t even include their shows and their activities outside of school and sometimes homebound learning. At the end of the day, if they don’t learn Spanish, that is okay. My goal is for my students to feel loved. After all, this is what they will remember forever. I have kids who don’t remember the Spanish but they remember my name, and most importantly they remember that they were cared for and cared about. If you are hungry, let me know. If you are sleepy, let me know. Truly-I love teaching because I really learned to love myself, my passions and my nuances.
In thinking about the whole child, as a teacher I try to embed Afro-Latino culture into my lessons. This is quite literally me doing the work to drive my district forward. I try my best to expose my students to the walls outside my classroom. The humanities are incredibly important in driving forward diversity and equity. I look at the core of what I do, and I ask these questions…
Are you a global citizen?
Can you partake in heartfelt conversations?
Can you assist someone when they are in need?
Do you know how to ask for help when you are in need?
Part of me feels like we should bring back a citizenship grade we used to have in elementary schools. Having a heart full of gold is often what matters the most in life and helps to create global citizens outside of the classroom. Sure- progress in regards to equity and diversity are slow. But progress is still progress. Let me leave you with this: What strategies are you actually implementing to drive your district forward in regards to equity and inclusion. What are you bringing to the table to make the positive change? How are you doing the work?
I love what I do for what I know I can do.