It’s been quite a week. In a change of pace, I’m sharing a bit of my life from outside the bike. I gave a speech Friday night at Teachers College, Columbia University, to a hundred or so student teachers and their mentors. The idea was to celebrate the completion of the student teaching work and to honor the teachers who had hosted them. My own student teacher, Tanil Russo, had put my name forward and Office of Teaching invited me to be the keynote speaker. Unfortunately, my best teaching friend, Dan Kerness, passed away on Wednesday. The whole school was in mourning Thursday and we closed early on Friday to go to services. I drove from services back home to change, re-read the draft a few more times, and then drove into the city. It turned out to be a lovely event, although I was too nervous to eat. Instead, I chatted with people and had about half of a cup of coffee. I didn’t stutter at the podium, spoke slowly and with passion, and got a ton of handshakes, shoulder squeezes, and compliments afterwards. This was especially important because I had told myself over and over again the night before that I shouldn’t worry because it would all be over in about fifteen minutes for better or worse. Then, on the drive into the city, I came to accept that the speech had to go well because 1) I believe in what I’m saying, 2) I want to reflect well on my own student teacher, and 3) I wanted to come back to my old school and show that I could do them proud. Whew. Turned out fine.
Beautiful leaflets reprinted below; click on the link to read the speech. SPEECH at TC