A Back to School Message

By September 5, 2020 News

We have arrived. The unofficial end of summer is upon us, and we have, or are about to embark on a brand new school year. We, at OWL, have been reading and absorbing your emails, texts, tweets, posts, and calls for help. We see you and we feel you. It’s September, yet you’re already tired. It’s a new year, but right now feels like part of a never ending cycle from which you haven’t been able to rest or see an end to. This should be a time of renewal and excitement, but you haven’t felt this exhausted, drained, and frustrated in perhaps your entire life. 

There is a term called radical acceptance that I invite you to bring into your lexicon.  Radical acceptance happens when we stop fighting the reality that is forthcoming, and embrace with open arms and heart our current situations. Now, radical acceptance doesn’t mean we are waving a white flag and surrendering–it’s actually quite the opposite. Radical acceptance means that we can see, with our full attention and intention, the opportunity for the real, authentic work that is right in front of us.  

So, what will your real, authentic work be this year? (Because it’s not the bitmoji, the app, or the newest thing we’ve been distracting ourselves with during our prep time!)

  • Maybe your work is building a community that transcends the Zoom square that each kid lives in.
  • Maybe your work is finding empathy for each student as they productively struggle through these first weeks.
  • Maybe your work is changing how you speak to yourself–ridding your language of “yeah buts”, “we can’t do”, “I don’t know how tos” and transitioning to “yes, ands”, “I can”, “I want to learn to” and “How can I…?”
  • Maybe your work is creating a moment of a cleansing breath when the tech in your classroom doesn’t quite work the way you want it to. 
  • Maybe your work is finding one moment of joy in your classroom each day and validating and celebrating it with the group. 

Whatever you choose to be your real and authentic work this year, know that who you are and what you do is more than enough. Who you are and what you do (this is true of the students too) is a cause for celebration that presents opportunities to share with students each and every day.