Friday, March 16, 2012

SOLSC #16 Living inside hope

The very least you can do in your life is to figure out what you hope for.  The very best you can give yourself is to live inside that hope.
                       -  Barbara Kingsolver  

I heard this quote on Tuesday* and it lingers on my mind.  
I am lost in thought about this.  Beautiful thoughts.
Thought I'd use it as a writing prompt this morning.  

I think I am a very reflective person.  I would have to reflect on this a bit to be absolutely certain.  

It seems as if I always soul-search.  Always thinking, am I doing what I should be doing? Is this what I hope for?

I am delighted to write - I believe I am living inside my hope.
I believe I am giving myself the very best.

A few years back, I watched as public school systems started to embed preschoolers in their buildings.  I was safely and happily ensconced in a private preschool.  A shiver ran down my back.  I wondered - what will this environment be like for preschoolers?  Will those older grades "tamp down" on the younger ones, insisting on more academic goals and expectations? Would the classrooms themselves look like little children lived there? Would there be disparities between "public school preschool" and "private school preschool"? Who is going to make sure that preschool remains joyful, playful, explorative, child-centered?

I am so delighted to be working at a public charter school in Washington, D.C.  For the first time in my life, I am working alongside elementary school teachers - passionate educators - and we are working to create an excellent learning environment for every child.  I am exhausted but fortified by being part of the founding faculty - we opened this past August.  I am honored to be working alongside many motivated and idealistic new, beginning teachers.  I have a large class of happy, engaged, active three and four year olds.  I have landed in a wonderful, dynamic, caring community.

What truly excites me is the sense that this community is not at all "alone."  Through the many visitors to our school, interactions with educators at conferences and workshops, even the comments I have been receiving and the blogs I am discovering through this month of slicing - I see so many inspired teachers, professionals who celebrate early childhood as the foundation of all learning, and live that out in extraordinary ways, each day for each child.

The very best you can give yourself is to live inside that hope.

I am truly blessed.

*See yesterday's blogpost - I attended the Potomac Association of Cooperative Teachers' Spring Conference - and hearing Jacky Howell speak.  Her topic was "Being a Reflective Teacher."


  1. A very nice quote. I enjoyed reading your reflection and getting to know you through it.

  2. Words to live by for sure. Thanks for sharing your inspirational quote. It is certainly something to think about when reflecting on where we put our focus.

  3. In the short time I have been reading your blog, I would say you are reflective and I love that you are writing into the hope.

  4. "to live inside hope", I want to ponder this. Thank you for sharing the quote and your journey with it.