Thursday, January 19, 2017

The Red Balloon

In the spring 1995, I was student teaching in a kindergarten classroom in southwest Michigan. That year, one of my best friends and college roommate died from complications after having a bone marrow transplant. It was an extremely difficult time and I was in total disbelief for a long time. As sad as I was, I never shed a tear at the hospital while visiting him or at his funeral. I was numb. Weeks later, my supervising teacher showed the short film, The Red Balloon. I remember watching it with vivid emotions. I kept thinking, why can't they just leave the balloon alone? When the balloon is finally popped, I started to cry. Actually, I wept. I had to leave the room. Now, the film does have an uplifting ending. Literally uplifting, as the boy is "rescued" by all the balloons of Paris and lifted far above the city. That film let loose the emotions that I had been bottling up inside of me.

These days, I'm much better at letting my emotions out. In fact, I cry ridiculously easy from movies to motivational speakers. I find that letting myself be vulnerable and showing my emotions has made me a better educator. It helps me connect with students, teachers, and parents. Yes, I maintain professionalism at all times, but I allow myself to be a real person with real emotions. Suppressing our feelings only distances us from others and makes it difficult to have emotional well being.  

As educators, we deal with a lot of emotions. Emotions from parents struggling to understand how best to help their child, emotions from students struggling to make friends and find their voice, emotions from within as we try to balance work and home. When we acknowledge our own emotions and make sure our needs are met, we can better help others with theirs. I've had many experiences that have helped me grow as an educator, but The Red Balloon helped me open up emotionally and that has helped me grow most of all. 


"Genius is the ability to renew one's emotions in daily experience." - Paul Cezanne

"When we direct our thoughts properly, we can control our emotions." - W. Clement Stone 

"Your intellect may be confused, but your emotions will never lie to you." - Roger Ebert 


Diana Shahin


Monday, January 23: Celebrate Monday Assembly 9:05 am 
Tuesday, January 24: Elementary Principals at Wayne RESA 7:30-9:30 am
Wednesday, January 25: IEP (Robertson) 8:15 am
Thursday, January 26: Staff Meeting 8:05 am
                                  Elementary Principals Meeting at Central Office 1:00-4:30 pm
Friday, January 27: PBIS Committee Planning Time 8:00-12:00
                                All K-12 Administrators to Eval Training at CTC 8:00-10:30 am

Monday, January 30: Student of the Month Assembly 9:05 am (Confidence)
Wednesday, February 1: Achievement Team Meeting 8:20 am 
                                      Diane's retirement party 5:30-8:00 pm 
Thursday, February 2: Staff Meeting 8:05 am
                                    PTA Meeting 6:30 pm 

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