I love my students. Each and every one of them. Even the ones that take most of my time and energy - particularly those like the student I'm wide awake at 12.40am thinking about - hoping he's okay.
I love when my students overcome the adversities in their day to day lives and even more when they allow me into their struggles so that I can help - even in some small way - just listening truly helps.
I love when my students build their courage and self respect and begin to believe in themselves.
I love when my students hear deficit theorizers and learn to ignore that ongoing voice in their own heads that echo what those horrible people say about my student's worth and ability.
I love when my students have the pride to step up and honour something they have or haven't done, apologise and take accountability and ensure that they leave a more positive mark on the world.
I love when my students succeed. Any success they make is a HUGE success and should be celebrated!! No matter how 'big' or 'small'.
I love when my students stumble. Because eventually they build up enough resilience to carry on and keep trying another day.
I love that my students are learning every day about the people who they want to become and that they know I've got their back - 110%.
I love that even in my darkest days and my more worrisome times - my students are there for me and offer help and support.
I love that my students give back what I put in and when they don't it's nice to see them apologise and try and make up for it the next time.
I love when the light flicks on in their brain and they build momentum and traction with a new idea. The lights turn on and it's a stunning sight.
I love when I have conversations with my students and when I laugh so hard I snort because it not only creates trust in my class that it's okay to laugh together - it creates an environment that is pure joy and happiness.
I love that I have learnt the true value of a student's trust and that students feel comfortable opening up to me about stuff that is going on. I'm not a counselor but maybe I will be in the future and I'll be able to help properly rather than just listening and then referring on.
I love that my students know it's okay to talk to me about that stuff. That they know I'll look after them. That they know when it comes to the end of it - they will look back and be grateful. Well I hope they will.
I just hope that my students stay safe in these trying times and that they keep pushing themselves to the best of their abilities - because that's all I ask. That they try and that they try hard to improve over time.
Kia kaha e tama ma.