Why is it that two weeks away, the space between semesters, is such a clear demarcation of time? Before and after. Then and now. We all returned from the holiday break with a clear sense that we built something good and admirable as a community of learners last semester and that this semester brings the opportunity for something new, something indicative of fresh goals and a clean slate.
As educators, this is the time of transition; while it is a new chapter for students, we see glimpses of the great strides students will make by summer. But we are not there yet, existing in this liminal space. During January and February we persevere- feeling like the end of the year may never come. Then, when we fear we cannot bear another rainy day, it happens. Some years it is the end of February, some years it is the beginning of March. The early signs of spring subtly make their appearance.
Daffodils, tulips, forsythia, pollen... and students and teachers alike begin to process.
Seemingly all of a sudden, there is more time behind us than there is in front of us. We look around and realize the growth, the learning, the relationships.. they are blooming along with the landscape. The goals we set in August are being realized, often surpassed. The community of individuals we began this school year with have evolved into even more amazing, marvelous versions of themselves and who they will become.
This moment is truly the beginning of the end. From that point forward, time moves at warp speed. As a community we celebrate the successes and mourn the impending end. As educators, we are reminded of the power of community, the far reaching effects of dedication, and the reason we are called to teach. The students. The growth. And we are proud. Proud of the hard work that has been done together. During the cold, dreary January and February days, it seems like that is so very far away, but it is just around the corner.