You know me, I walk into your classroom each morning, hair nor teeth brushed, same dirty clothes I wore the day before, homework incomplete, tired and hungry. Every morning I come in, hoping you will smile, ask me about my night, maybe even give me a hug. I’m empty, Teacher, how will you fill my tank?

So much of the work in education extends beyond the lesson plans and grades. We work diligently to prepare for our days with students by researching the latest and greatest activities to engage them in learning. We plan tirelessly to meet the ever present curriculum standards so we are preparing our children to do well on THE TEST. We chunk and cluster material so we can best meet the needs of our learners across the spectrum. But, in spite of our work, if our students enter with an empty tank, how do we respond? Shouldn’t filling their tanks with kindness, love, and compassion be our first priority?

Tomorrow, will you just teach or will you work to fill their tanks?