“Ideal teachers are those who use themselves as bridges over which they invite their students to cross, then having facilitated their crossing, joyfully collapse, encouraging them to create bridges of their own.” — Nikos Kazantzakis
For me, teaching is not a one-way street. Just like a bridge, there is movement back and forth. A bridge is meant to support, but not carry, an object from one side to the other. I see this as very similar to a teacher in the classroom. I wish to be there as support, and provide pathways that students can choose to follow. Some may step back while others move ahead, but the choice is theirs. Just as some bridges cross deep chasms that can scare us, students may feel fear as they cross from the known and familiar into an unknown world of new learning. A solidly built bridge will help keep the student grounded and on the path. The bridge must be crossed under the students’ own power, as the teacher is not a vehicle but a guide, encouraging students to explore ideas in their own way, and to develop their own tools so that they may be able to build bridges of their own. As I explore new ways to support my students, I am excited to build my own new bridges of learning.