"Whether you are a teacher, parent, relative, boss, or fellow community member, each of us has a chance to make a positive and impactful difference in a child’s life.
But in order to do this, we must carefully consider this question:
What do you think matters most to our children?
For 20 years I have been posing this question to my students. At the beginning of every school year, I would ask my students to give me advice on how to be their best teacher. I asked them to think about the times they felt most successful and to consider what the adults in their lives did to make this success possible.
The classroom would become immediately silent as the students wrote intensely for longer than they had ever written before. Smiles would appear on their faces as they reflected on the happy experiences they were remembering. After reading their responses I would add to my list all the ideas they mentioned.
Surprisingly, many of the responses were the same. Year after year, in every grade level, content area and classroom I was in, regardless of demographics or background, students were saying the same things and had the same message: It’s the small things you do that mean the most. That is what they remembered. That is what mattered.
Here is a list of the 12 Most Important things that came out of these amazing conversations:"