[The Spring 2021 semester seems to have been the most challenging for my students of any in my 20+ years of college teaching, and I know for sure it was the most challenging for me. I’m not gonna pretend I have clear reflections or lessons I can take away from it, but what I do have are striking individual moments that reminded me of why we do what we do in the classroom. So this week I’ll highlight a handful of those, and I’d love to share your favorite Spring 2021 moments—or other semester reflections—in a crowd-sourced weekend post!]
I had the chance to teach two adult learning classes this Spring, for the two programs with which I work most consistently (Fitchburg State’s ALFA and Assumption College’s WISE), and they were as consistently inspiring as they always are. But while that was true of the classes and conversations themselves, what was even better this Spring were the emails I got from students in between class meetings (and after the final one as well), sharing additional thoughts and ideas, highlighting texts and resources, making connections to aspects of our contemporary moment, and more. I’ve tried in all sorts of ways, in this space and elsewhere, to make the case for why everyone should teach in programs like these if they get the chance, and I’d say that how responsive and knowledgeable the students are, how much I always learn from them, is one of the best arguments I could make. And those elements, and just the emails themselves, were never more meaningful than they were in Spring 2021.
Last moment tomorrow,
PS. What do you think? Spring 2021 moments or reflections you’d share?