A long time ago, I was fortunate to move in the orbit of a truly outstanding teacher, whom I’ve spent most of my career trying to be worthy of being in his league. I was in a writing group with him in 2001, and he shared with us a little pamphlet he wrote for his students at a critical juncture in their English course, when things weren’t going as well as he thought they could. It struck me then and I made sure to save it.
I try to put it back into the world at the start of every school year, though I haven’t been all that consistent about it. I do make sure to /read/ it at the start of every school year. It’s very tied to the history of the class and students he had, and it’s also very universal. I never walk away thinking I could have used my time better.
It’s been a long time since we lost you, Rob, but you still echo in the world.