After just finishing the first week of school, I found it interesting that today’s church sermon focused on connecting with others. Being intentional in greeting people, taking time to make connections…things we too often gloss over. We all have our comfort zone, the same people we talk to, the same path we walk most days. The pastor this morning reminded us that we never know what the person standing next to us might be going through. Most of us have been in that place of “needing to be greeted.”
While listening to the sermon, I began to reflect on this past “first week” of school. In my upper elementary music classes, we listened to James Taylor’s “Today, Today, Today” for our beginning warm-up. Opening lyrics say, “Today, today, today…I’m finally on my way.” Students were asked to finish that thought, use their imagination and tell me where they were headed.
Their answers were funny, thoughtful, and interesting-ranging from-to the restroom, to lunch, home, grandma’s house, college, heaven. And then the one that left the room silent, “On my way to visit my dad in prison.” As if that wasn’t surprising enough, another sweet student said almost exactly the same thing. Serious connections. Right in the middle of music class, two students discover they share a difficult life situation. And then I overheard these two precious kiddos connect further as one shared they were actually in foster care right now.
I knew at that moment what we were doing was important, but didn’t really give it much thought after the fact. The week was long, there were so many things to get done. I was so tired. Today’s church sermon reminded me of the importance of those connections. Teacher to student, student to student-we all need each other. And if I expect my students to listen and learn from me, I must be willing to listen and learn from them.
Here’s to a week of playing some super fun rhythm and singing games in Mrs. Morris’s music class! And in the midst of our making music, may we also make lasting connections which will help us through the tough days this life inevitably brings.