I’m standing in front of my first period class after a long Thanksgiving break.
Papers are rustling.
Pencils are being sharpened.
Voices are lowering to a whisper.
And it occurs to me how glad I am to be here.
So I tell my students.
“We have a lot to go over today,” I begin and most of my middle school faces turn serious.
“But I just want to tell you all how happy I am to be here.”
Curiosity moves across those adolescent brows like a wave from one side of the room to the other.
Some even looked worried like they are afraid I am going to tell them I’m sick or dying.
“It’s true,” I continue. “I’m glad to be here this morning with all of you.
“I think teachers sometimes don’t say that enough.
“This is a great class. You’re all really good students, and I’ve watched…
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