Stuart's Spectacular Students

This is dedicated to my amazing students. The goal is for each and every one of them to feel unstoppable by the time they walk out of the classroom door for the final time in May. This chronicles their journey; their own Chronicles of Self-Actualization.

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Saturday, November 07, 2009

Waking Up With More to Give

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By the time I went to bed last night I was completely drained and dead.

When I woke up this morning I was completely refreshed and alive.


Anyone can carry his or her burden however hard until    nightfall.  Anyone can do his work, however    hard, for one day.   Anyone can live sweetly, patiently, lovingly,    purely till
the sun goes down.  And this is all that life really    means.

— R.L. Stevenson 

(Author of such works as Treasure Island, The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, and A Child's Garden of Verses......and by a man who, a victim of poor health, found himself constantly at death's door. He died over 100 years ago at the age 44 but is still among the most popularly read writers of all time.)

I feel that by giving 100% of yourself to what you're doing during your waking hours, you give back to yourself 100% during your sleeping hours. 

Millions of our cells are being shed every second, and they are being replaced by millions more through mitosis in the same amount of time. Even if you conservatively adjust this process to one million per minute, that's 60 million new cells being created for every hour of sleep you get.

During the day not everything goes as planned. Before yesterday's math test the student who stormed out of class in the beginning of the year in pain from my poor teaching method with her (I dropped the hammer instead of realizing she needed the hug) wrote this:

"Hello Mr. Staurt (she still misspells my name) thank you for really helping me and when I got in trouble (a few weeks ago she lost it and started throwing chairs in the cafeteria) you hugged me and I really was joyful and I really want to pass Mr. Staurt's class and go to 6th grade and I know I can pass because you teached me how to do math.

THANK YOU very much"

And on a separate piece of paper she filled it with: 


She has changed from a person believing very little in herself and her world, to now dreaming very big. And guess what she scored on yesterday's 5th-grade level test?

A zero......nothing

And guess how I felt after I graded it?

A nothing. I had given her and her fellow students everything I had, and now there was nothing left in me to give. Even though the average student in class increased their grade by 17% and we had our first 100% score of the year, my best teaching scored a zero with her. She and I had both failed, and I went to bed with that fact. 

“Far better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious    triumphs, even though checkered by failure, than to take rank with those spoor spirits who neither enjoy much nor suffer much, because they live in the grey twilight that knows not victory nor defeat.”
— Theodore Roosevelt

(For Teddy character was ultimately about action and struggle, rather than good intentions and reflection)

 And since through my own struggles I've developed a powerful ability to focus my thoughts on what I want to see in the world, the cells that had nothing left to give died away during the night and were replaced by new cells full of power and hope and new intelligence of how I can help her succeed.

At the rate of at least 60 million an hour.

Next week is going to be the best week of her life. This is the fact I woke up to.

“To laugh often and much; to win the respect of intelligent    people and the affection of children; to earn the appreciation of honest critics    and endure the betrayal of false friends; to appreciate beauty, to find the best in others; to leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child, a garden, or a redeemed social condition; to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived.  This is to have succeeded.”
— Ralph Waldo Emerson

(poet, philosopher, lecturer, and essayist who based many of his works from the observations he made in his journal as a boy.......Adding to my belief that we know the answers to life as children, forget them as adults, and remember them in old age)

“One life on this earth is all that we get, whether it    is enough or not enough, and the obvious conclusion    would seem to be that at the very least we are fools if we do not live it as fully and bravely and beautifully as we can.”   
— Frederick Buechner 

(novelist and preacher who as a boy overcame the loss of his father to suicide, fueling a literary search for truth, joy, home and courage)




  • At 10:58 PM , Anonymous Angie said...

    You have some of my favorite quotes posted here, but you have the ability to make one believe in all that they mean. Thank you for your tireless efforts. I admire you for everything you give of yourself to make your students strong and to give them the one thing that they so desperately need......and that is the ability to believe in themselves and to dream. You ROCK, Adam !



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