To Jessica Goodenow.
I think we always question whether or not we are helping others. At some time or another, everyone needs encouragement to go on. It is always uplifting when someone tells you that you helped him or her along the way. Good job!
One circumstance where I looked outside of myself to uplift a colleague was with a para-professional. She is fantastic para. She has the presence of a teacher in the classroom. When she comes into the room, with a one-minute prep, she could co-teach the classroom. She is one in a million in the realm of para-professionals. One day I asked her if she had every considered being a teacher. She looked at me like that thought had never entered her brain. After explaining to her how wonderful she is with the students and in the classroom, she opened up to me about a disappointment she had had when trying to get her degree in education. She had gotten pregnant with her now 20 year old daughter and never thought she could be a mom and finish a degree. Life got crazy, but now is settling down again. I told her about how universities are trying to make degrees more accessible to older students and gave her a couple universities to look into. A couple weeks went by. She surprised me one day by saying she signed up for an art class to go towards her general requirements. I was so happy. She told me that I had been the bug in her ear. She needed to get back to her passion. She loves kids. Anyone could see that. It was all about honesty and appreciation.