Me: Hi, Zahaira. What are you working on today?Zahaira: Matter...everything's matter. This pen is matter. This paper's matter. That prize bucket is matter. Even that girl over there who always watches The 16 Show is matter.["That girl over there" gives Zahaira a look. Zahaira is unfazed.]Zahaira: What? You do always watch The 16 Show, and you are matter.Me: [stifling laughter] Great, so you're learning all about matter. So tell me, what are your goals in this class?Zahaira: I don't know...like, work hard, get smart?Me: Awesome...are you working hard to get smart?Zahaira: Oh yeah. [dramatic pause] Oh, and see that desk? That's matter too.
Being a first year teacher is hard. Although my first year was a while ago, I distinctly remember feeling completely lost and like nothing I was doing could make any difference. So, to all new teachers...let Zahaira's words be a reminder that what you do does, in fact, matter.