Today, my sixth grade homeroom is running the mile during PE and they are NOT happy about it.


I went out to my truck to grab my mid-morning snack and there they were, running around the track, some looking like seasoned runners, others looking, well, tired.


But what struck me was they were all without masks. I can count on my fingers the number of times I’ve seen them without masks. Their smiles. Their frowns. The “please don’t make me run one more lap” look on their faces, all of it just made me happy, if only for a moment.


So, being the good, supportive teacher I am, I started heckling them! 🙂 Then I got many more smiles as they were in the last laps before being done. Their faces lighting up, helped lighten my soul too.

It’s amazing how a smile can simply turn your day around. And we can’t them. We can’t see how they struggle or how they need something but just can’t raise their hand.

As we push through this pandemic, remember to hug your sons and daughters, your nieces and nephews, your friends’ kids, because they are hurting, just like we teachers are right now. This isn’t easy, and it won’t get easier just because some man in suit says it will. We need to be checking in to make sure our kids are ok, because, not “seeing” their friends, it’s causing problems too.

As for the mile, they just came into the room, red faced, but excited to tell me how they did, “fast time” or not. We are making connections, slowly but surely, and it’s what we all need.

And wear your damn mask, please.