During Lent we are offering a weekly blog written by Pullen members about their passions. The phrase “Passion of Jesus” has been used in Christian history to refer to the suffering of Jesus from his entrance into Jerusalem until his crucifixion. This makes sense because one definition of the word “passion” is to suffer. Yet another meaning of the term in English is strength of feeling.
So each Monday in Lent, a Pullen person is sharing in blog form something about which she or he is passionate. It is our hope that reading about the deep commitments of other Pullenites will enrich our own passions and our experience of this holy season.
-The Education Council
Why I’m Passionate about Teaching
by: Serena Buckner
My grandmother used to say that gardening was in her blood. She had a passion for digging in the dirt and nurturing things as they grew. As a child I would often play school. I remember asking my teachers for any extra ditto sheets so that I could take them home and add them to the lessons I planned for my little sisters. I guess you could say that teaching was in my blood at an early age. Over the years I have considered myself one of the lucky ones. I somehow discovered my calling early in life and have been nourished by my work for many years. When I am in the classroom with my energetic, curious, and affectionate young students, I know that I am where I belong. I pour much of my energy into my work and often have a hard time balancing my work with other parts of my life. Being a teacher is intricately tied to my personal identity. It is my passion.
As part of a group of Pullenites traveling to Cuba this spring I recently spent time reflecting on the idea of accompaniment. In particular I thought about a special colleague with whom I have shared the same passion for early childhood education. Together we have spent countless hours over many years studying research on best practices, observing other classrooms, attending conferences and workshops, planning and implementing programs, serving on committees and task forces, well – you get the idea. We have supported each other and have grown to be better educators together. I thought about how precious it has been to have my friend, another one who has teaching in her blood, with which to journey through most of my career. Sharing this passion has not only made me a better teacher, it has sustained me and kept me invested in my work.
Whoever you are called to be, whatever work you are called to do, may you find a friend who shares your passion to accompany you along the journey.