Our principal’s favourite word this year is emerge.

Flour, sugar, butter, eggs and chocolate chips come together to make cookies, musicians play their individual instruments to create a musical masterpiece and a farmer plants seeds in anticipation of the crop that will emerge come harvest. In all examples of emergence, there are factors both within and outside our control.

Already this year I have witnessed emergence in unexpected ways. Most significantly, a little boy, lost in two years of despair after the death of his mother, emerged this week with hope. How? Seemingly many factors contributed: the new school year provided an opportunity for a new beginning, a teacher took the time to let him talk and write about his mother, new classmates reached out in concern and significant time has passed since the tragic loss of his mother. Despite our efforts during the last few years, hope eluded him until this week. Slowly he seems to be emerging from the grips of grief.

Though a farmer knows that draught or hail can irreversibly damage the crops, he does not leave his crop to chance. He carefully controls and manipulates the seed, soil and irrigation and tends to the crop for months on end hoping that what emerges is plentiful. As educators, we cannot leave our classroom environment or our students’ learning to chance. We must plan, monitor and adjust all that is in our control. Only then will the yield be considerable. Only then will greatness emerge.


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