Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Waiting for Light Bulbs

By Pam Greenholt
Challenge I Director, North Carolina

Well, our first week of Challenge I tutorials has come and gone. It is always what I expect--nervousness, excitement, and everything in between--for students, parents, and the tutor! It's a shame we can't bottle up all the energy that is present that first week and spread it out when the energy levels have a tendency to run a little low in the spring.

It would be interesting to be able to capture accurately and honestly what each person is anticipating for the year. However at this point I can only put down my thoughts as the tutor.

One of the things I look forward to most of all in working with students is the proverbial "light coming on" in their eyes when a new concept strikes them, or they suddenly understand something they have had trouble grasping. What a joy it is to see their expression when the moment of understanding occurs. Making those moments happen is what a teacher lives for.

Unfortunately there is no formula which produces those results on demand. It is a humbling reminder that we are our Creator's..."it is He who has made us, and not we ourselves..." (Psalm 100:3) He is the one who holds the keys to all knowledge, understanding, and wisdom.

The second thing I long for during the course of each year is being a witness to the process of spiritual maturity in each student. I would love to have a time machine that would capture the essence of each student's character at the beginning of the year, and then play that side by side with their end-of-year person.

Most of the time the process is so gradual that it is barely noticeable, but every now and then there is a spurt of growth and we are privileged to see clearly the "self" growing less and the concern for others growing more. I am sure the angels in heaven are smiling with delight just as I am down here when those moments occur!

So the year has begun, and my prayers will be focusing on these two hopes and lots of others for each student who comes to our Challenge I tutorial.

An interesting thought occurred to me the other day. Do you suppose that God is wanting the same two things for us, His students, His children--that the light will come on and that we'll move from selfishness to selflessness?? Now if only that were as easy as learning a few verb conjugations!


Are you a teacher or a tutor with Classical Conversations? If you would like to share your story, I want to hear it! What do you enjoy, fear, or look forward at the start of each year? Send your stories via email to 1 Smart Mama.

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