So I had my first day of work yesterday, and it was wonderful.  I’m feeling an overflow of gratitude this morning, which is a great feeling to have.  I think these are the highlights of my gratitude, though:

10492081_10202688290505593_3543025024327569339_n(1) I’m grateful for a passionate teaching partner and team.  The idea of reciprocity in any relationship is critical to success.  I’m excited to be able to continue to work with people who love teaching as much as I do.  Chicago was hard to leave, because I felt that my team and I truly coveted the collaborative synergy we had on our team.  In fact, it was so great, that I didn’t think it would be possible anywhere else.

(2) I’m grateful for autonomy, trust, and teacher efficacy. I’ve never been part of an organization that trusts teachers so much and holds them to such a high level.  It makes me want to work harder, learn even more, and push my thinking to even broader levels.  Too often, schools are focused on being the best at some sort of concrete deliverable like assessment or technology integration.  This team values “being the best at getting better,” and that’s a great thing to be the best at.  It implies trial-and-error, active inquiry, research, and an intent at truly bettering our practice and the system as a whole.

(3) I’m grateful for all of the experiences that have gotten me to this point thus far, because they’ve helped me find peace in a roundabout way I never thought possible. This past year was rough, but quite frankly, if it wasn’t for getting both my personal and professional hearts broken, I would not have reflected on my morals, further solidified my identity, and as a result, sought out other–even greater–possibilities.  It proves that…

…when we follow our hearts, and choose not to settle, a weight lifts, the sun shines a little brighter, and for a brief moment, at least, we find peace.

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