Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Define Inspire

from dictionary.com

in·spire verb, -spired, -spir·ing.

–verb (used with object)
1. to fill with an animating, quickening, or exalting influence: His courage inspired his followers.
2. to produce or arouse (a feeling, thought, etc.): to inspire confidence in others.

Synonyms: affect, animate, arouse, be responsible for, carry, cause, commove, elate, embolden, endue, enkindle, enliven, exalt, excite, exhilarate, fire up, galvanize, get*, give impetus, give one an idea, give rise to, hearten, imbue, impress, infect, inflame, influence, inform, infuse, inspirit, instill, invigorate, motivate, occasion, produce, provoke, quicken, reassure, set up, spark, spur, start off, stir, strike, sway, touch, trigger, urge, work up 
 
Take a look at the synonyms for inspire.  Those words seems to encompass so much of what teaching is all about.  But how do we inspire out students?  Students that come from all walks of life.  Students who all have their preconceived notions of what life is about and how hard they have to work to achieve their goals.  Do they have goals?  dreams?  aspirations?  
 
I have spoken with students who have no desire to graduate and it truly pains me.  I have to wonder what events could lead any child to not aspire to finish school.  To not care.  Maybe it has just been ingrained in my mind that finishing school equals a greater chance of succeeding in a career, which in turn equals a better lifestyle and future.  Surely someone has informed these students of this undeniable fact.  Why are they choosing not to listen?
 
How can we as teachers inspire these students?  The ones that have never dared to dream or have just given up.  I'm hoping to find the answer to that question myself as I continue to grow and learn as a teacher.  I hope to learn from my readers through their shared experiences, just as much as I learn from my own.  To be continued......

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