Start strong. Finish stronger

I write this post as a tribute and thank you to all educators who breathe inspiration into the lives of their students and into one another from September’s strong start to June’s stronger finish.

This post is the completion of a promise after a response reminiscent of a rant  written to address comments in the media about educators. In the spirit of warmth and fuzziness I’ll keep my word(s) positive.

You did it!
10 months in the books, out of the books, torn away from the books, and complete with several second looks. From field trip bookings and to figurative (text)book burnings the school year sparked a 5/6s of a year long fire of growth. And now, as the embers cool, the ash settles, and the warmth fades another year of memories will linger as ember in the mind to be stoked again soon.

Does anyone else feel the same way? I do and know that I’m not alone on this one.

This year, my seventh, which I am privileged to witness many intellectual and life fires lit, fanned, spread wildly, and occasionally control burned. A feat, I am sure, that was accomplished throughout millions of classrooms around the world thanks to incredibly caring educators like you.

Imagine that you were part of the transformation, edification, and education of a student. You helped someone, or several someones, be a part of something, achieve something or realize something they’d never known before? Could there be a more noble calling?

When students arrived in your classroom last September, they were rough around the edges, unsure of what was to come, carrying some of the baggage from the previous year, and full of energy (nervous and otherwise). And from that you set out rough around the edges, unsure of what was to come, carrying some of the baggage from the previous year, and full of energy (nervous and otherwise).

There were times, too many to mention (reports, parent meetings, phone calls, bombed lessons, planning lapses, sick days, and life in general) that required us to dig deep into our vaults to rise above, resolve, and retain our raison d’etre.

And now?

Rest, raise a toast to one another, as I do to you because you started strong and you finished stronger.

Cheers! Santé! Gom bui! Kampai! Prosit! Djam! Mabuhay!
Thank you for the inspiration.



The Author

Will Gourley

P/J lead learner and SERT at Adrienne Clarkson PS in the YRDSB. Focused on disruptive, and divergent modern learning. Member of the global TED-Ed(Club) movement, 1 of 110 TED Ed Innovative Educators, and Global Math Project Ambassador. Twitter @willgourley Proudly blogging here and at

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