Today is the last day of my writing class. We’re not doing any coursework. We’re just meeting, so I can pass along their final exams and wish them well in their subsequent semesters.
I’m also planning a little Christmas party. It’s purely selfish on my part. I guess it’s because I know some of these folks will not have much of a Christmas because of their economic status. I’m hoping some of them will remember me as a person who encouraged them, even though many times I wanted to shake them and yell, “Wake up! This is your future we’re talking about!”
I have two students I know will go on and get their degrees because they are willing to put in the work it takes to graduate. I have three “special needs” students who will probably never make it. In between, there lies the rest of the class. They have the ability, but no desire. I think they are in school because they don’t know what else to do.
What I’m trying to do with my small gifts is to tell them there is at least one person in the world who cares about them. Oh, and I’m also leaving a little of propaganda with them, too. Maybe some of you can take away a message from these quotations I’ve put together. Or maybe you can pass them on to someone who might need to hear them.
As we part at the end of the semester, I want to give you some thoughts that someday may inspire you. Think about these quotes, then continue your quest.
Your future is created by what you do today, not tomorrow.– Kiyoshaki
You are what you think about all day long. — Robert Schuller
You are creating your future with every single thought. — Jack Canfield
Finally, here are a few “Barbara Tips” you can take with you:
- Being fearful of making a mistake prevents you from taking action. TAKE ACTION!
- Education is all about attitude – be positive toward learning. DON”T MAKE EXCUSES.
- Nobody ever died from working hard in school. PUT FORTH YOUR BEST EFFORT.
- Frequently people are unsuccessful because they are afraid to fail. FEEL THE FEAR AND DO IT ANYWAY!
- Whether you’re rich or poor, be happy first. HAPPINESS BRINGS GOOD THINGS INTO YOUR LIFE.
- A strong, positive self-perception will carry you through all of the ups and downs in life. THINK THE BEST ABOUT YOURSELF.
- Everyone has bad times; it’s how you handle them that show what kind of person you truly are. SHOW YOUR BEST WHEN THINGS ARE THE WORST.
- Be aware of the words you use. What you say is a reflection of your self-perception. CHANGE YOUR WORDS, AND YOU’LL CHANGE YOUR LIFE.
- A long journey begins with the IDEA to go on the trip. GET ON THE TRAIN TOWARD SUCCESS.
Finally, I leave you with this thought. The true definition of a teacher is someone who tries to draw out the genius in her students. When you find the genius inside of you, don’t shut the door. Instead, welcome it in, encourage it and continue to learn for a lifetime.
It’s the best gift I can give you.
–Barbara Celeste McCloskey