The kids that show up in our classes, hallways and gyms every day come in all shapes, sizes and colors, with varying physical, social, emotional and spiritual needs. The kids each have their own strengths and weaknesses, hopes and fears, and baggage. Their levels of motivation and IQs vary as much as their socio-economic backgrounds, religious backgrounds and home situations. Each of these variables and more factor into what kids are like when they get to school. Bottom line: each of the kids in our classes, hallways and gyms truly is unique.
One of the challenges in reaching unique kids, each of whom is wired differently, and really making an impact on them lies in figuring out how to connect in an authentic way. This can be tricky. Not every adult in the building can connect with every kid, and there are plenty of kids who seem to struggle to connect with anyone. This is where you enter the picture. You and only you can do this. I'd stake my career on the following: there are plenty of kids who can connect with plenty of adults, but there is this one kid (think about it... you know who he or she is) who needs you to be something special and rare and extraordinary. You are the one adult in the building who can connect with this kid. And this kid needs you to be that one person.
What do I mean by that one person? Think about the people in your own life who make your life better, who add value to your life, who make you happy. Now, narrow the list to that one person who does this to a greater extent than anyone else. You know who I'm talking about. Narrow the list to that one person who:
- makes you smile.
- makes you stand a bit taller.
- makes you walk with your shoulders back a bit more.
- makes you want to be a better person.
- makes you feel significant.
- believes in you more than you believe in yourself.
- believes in your potential.
- sees you for your potential.
- takes an interest in you, even about mundane things.
- knows how to make you laugh.
- knows how to make you cry.
- knows exactly what to say.
- always has your back.
- thinks you're cool.
- thinks you're smart.
- thinks you're the best.
Go be that one person and change this kid's life.