Tuesday, August 20, 2013

New school year with JOY

Last week I read a poem (on another blogger's site) that talked about inhaling joy and exhaling joy robbers. It really made me think about this coming school year.What could I do "to inhale" more joy?
I was reading Larry Ferlazzo's blog about quotes and storytelling. (You can read it here.) The part that really caught my attention was the 40 Story quotes. This quote below by Harold Goddard, brought me JOY! It gave me hope. It encouraged me. It challenged me. It made me inhale JOY!

“The destiny of the world is determined less by the battles that are lost and won than by the stories it loves and believes in.”

 It also reminded me about a few very important things:

  • I will face battles this school year, but winning them does not always have to be my priority
  • Everyone has stories to tell
  • At times my students' stories might not match my idea of a good story, but I need to believe in my students--they are an endless source of stories
  • It is okay to lose a battle, but gain a destiny together with my students!!
  • Stories = inhaling JOY!
This quote by an artist, Jonathan Harris, also spoke to me about the power of words and stories.

“No matter what you do in life, what you create, what career you have, whether you have a family or kids, or make a lot of money. Your greatest creation is always going to be your life’s story.” 

This spoke to me again about the power of our stories. Whether it is the story of my student escaping a war-torn country, a new family adopting five children because both of their parents died, or a simple story about shopping for new school supplies; I can exhale the joy robbers by focusing on my students' stories-- their creations. Because when you create something new you are inhaling JOY: maybe a new word that you learned finally to use in the correct way; maybe you can now write a complex sentence; maybe you have learned enough words to write a story that researches to the second page. There is a definite JOY in a finished story.

How could you inhale more JOY this year??


  1. Dear Jaana,
    I like how we find thoughts, questions and inspiration when reading. I'll take your question with me and ponder about it. I hope that your year will be full of joy and memorable stories.

  2. Stories = inhaling JOY!
    Love that! I will take it with me to my writing workshop this year. All the best for a joyous school year, Jaana!

  3. What a wonderful quotes! The image of inhaling joy is really strong for me as I take on the new year in just a few hours! What a great post!


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