It is the time of year where we are all, in one way or another, thinking about and expressing what we are thankful for. It seems like everywhere you turn (even my Thanksgiving table) we are asking this question or maybe we received an email or letter letting us know what an organization is thankful for at this time of year. Most popular answers seem to be related to health, family, friends, food, etc.
For our students it may be hard to be put on the spot with such a big and open-ended question. There are SO MANY things that someone could be thankful for and it can be overwhelming to narrow it down to just one. At Learning Prep we try to teach our students the skills to be prepared for these situations by scaffolding and scripting typical answers so that students don’t have that nervous, uncomfortable feeling in front of others. We work hard to teach students the social fake of just picking one thing, even if there are many, many things they are thankful for because all the guests at your dining room table will be thankful for that. While this is an excellent skill to teach and learn, sometimes it is also nice to hear students’ genuine answers that may come from a different than the norm perspective. One particularly good one that caused me pause was: “I’m thankful that the sun came out today, because it isn’t always going to be here, ya know.”
I’m thankful that this student made me stop and really think about this and the gift that I take for granted. Sometimes our students’ unique perspectives are a gift to us all.