Today Mrs. Walker and I forgot to turn off the projector after teaching a new photoshop skill to our yearbook staff.
On the screen the was a a single leaf. I believe it was from a oak tree given its rounded edges.
This fall Mrs. Walker captured it and used it for a watercolor assignment.Preserved by the library laminator, the leaf still maintained the essence of fall.
There it lay with its vibrant green veins and patches of orangey-red.
The green in the leaf reminded me of spring. It is neither spring or spring break for me.
Winter in Iowa is a long stretch. The cold months seem to drag on forever. The first snow is magical. I am always eager to pull out my bright pink coat and catch snowflakes with my tongue. I long to be Lorelia Gilmore and walk around with a coffee and admire the magic of it all.
After that first snowfall, I change my tune. I will inevitably fall on my rear end and curse the day I ever said I liked winter.This year it has only been twice, but it was almost three times this morning.
While I am longing for spring break, I found a new leaf today.
No, it was not from outside. Mostly because the ground still maintains a layer of slowly melting snow.
It was with a student.
This student has been trouble for me since the beginning of the year. She was missing several days, refusing to do projects, and three weeks ago had melt down and slammed a door in my face.
When a parent is not present in a student’s life, I get to experience all of the joys of having teenagers.
But, this week has been different.
This student has camped out in an isolation room in the library all week in her spare time. Yesterday she turned in all of her assignments, and they were good.
Everything that she turned in was a low A. I was really proud.
This morning I woke up to an email she sent last night upon seeing her grades.
For a paper that she scored a 95% on, she asked if she could conference with me about it to make up that extra 5%.
It was the most respectful email I have ever seen a student write. It did not sound like a teenager, it sounded like a mature adult.
Today as we sat down in her writing conference, and she shared what she liked about the paper. I showed her the areas that she missed.
She was smiling and engaged.
While I may be longing the sight of spring, this leaf lifted my spirit far more than spring ever could.