I try to get my posts for the week written by Wednesday. I failed to do that this week and was more than a little blue about that fact. “I’m so behind!” But then I got up Thursday morning and went on-line. I’m so glad that I had a post still open this week so that I could point you toward some inspirational people.
Dr. Jill Biden
As I’m sure many of you know, Biden’s degree is in education. She was chosen as the final speakef for this week’s American Library Association virtual conference. She pointed out that libraries are places that young people gather and grow. They grow into kind, compassionate people. “What you do matters so much,” she said. “In big cities and small towns, libraries fulfill a purpose that almost nothing else does. They’re a place of information for all; a place where people can come together as a community. It’s the aisles of books, the knowledge of generations collected and open to anyone. …”
Isn’t it wonderful to know that as writers our work is a part of this? You can read more about what she had to say here.
You know who Jill Biden is but I’d be willing to guess that most of you have no idea who Darrion Cockrell is. He was recently selected as the Missouri Teacher of the Year for 2021. Many children’s writers are teacher and he emphasized just how important teacher were, especially PE teachers, in turning his life around.
You see by the time he was 10 year-old he was a gang member. He later became a foster child. But because 2 teachers focused on helping him find a place at school, he became someone his entire community looks up to. He has an impact on students every day. What does he teach? PE.
I’ll admit. I can be more than a bit elitist and was surprised they gave the award to a gym teacher. Really? They gave it to a teacher who meets his students where they are and gives them a reason to love school. That’s something we as writers, me included, need to remember.
Check out his video statement.
I wrote about Amanda Gorman on my Facebook author page. Gorman is the young poet who read a poem at Joe Biden’s inauguration. Gorman grew up with a speech impediment which she overcame as a young adult.
What inspires me most about her? Since the inauguration, she has spoken about how overwhelmed she has been by the response to her work. She isn’t a young poet who walks around patting herself on the back.
She is someone who writes from the heart and her words connect with those who hear them.
We can’t plan to do that. It would be nice if we could. But what we can do is to keep putting our hearts into what we write, keep supporting our libraries, and our teachers and students. Because reaching out can make a difference.