We started off this unit by discussing ‘positive self-talk’, something that I have struggled with my entire life. I tend to view the world through an overly critical lens so to teach students to recognize all the positive attributes of their ever-changing existence felt a little forced. I could see myself in the students that were struggling to put their own perceptions of themselves into a positive light but as we started to share our lists as a class I saw tiny sparks of ‘oh yeah, me too’ in some of their eyes. I am sure those same students saw my energy shift when the room started to fill with positive thoughts.
I’m no hippy, but the vibe in the grade 9 hallway today was truly grooving. All from a little bit of directed positivity injected into a world of tests, critiques, analysis, and assessments.
Phil Brayton is a former punk musician turned teacher at 12 Mile Coulee School (on a temporary contract, just saying)