I believe there is a soundtrack to our lives.
I love music- and though I cannot play or sing very well, I have strong opinions about music. I have strong opinions because music inspires me and challenges me. It acts as a muse when I think and write and create, a salve when I hurt, and a lyrical voice for my passions when my tongue cannot speak clearly.
But I find a lot of modern music is missing something.
We we live in an age where music is edited and auto-tuned to a point where the voice is lost. What we have is "perfection," but not personal. Not powerful.
The Beatles were not perfect- but their music sticks with you. U2 has soaring ballads that reasonate not just because they hit the notes, but because Bono's raw wailing hits your soul. Joe Cocker's voice may not be pretty, but he makes you feel the miles on his life. Watching Garth Brooks in concert isn't great because he hits perfect pitch, it's great because you hear the joy in his art. Heart may be an 80's band, but they are able to connect you to their struggles through voices that take risks.
So yeah, I sound like an old guy.
Taylor Swift is talented, so are the boys from One Direction. I'm on the fence about twenty one pilots. I like thief music.
But it I don't feel it the way I do the other stuff. It doesn't haunt me.
In today's schools, students strive for perfection. They want greatness, and that is admirable. But they are missing something. They do not see the beauty in their imperfections. Because in our schools, perfection is regurgitating what they heard. Perfection is correct answers and high scores.
But we lose their voice.
That imperfect spelling, that poorly placed infinitive, that backwards 6. These reveal the heart of the student- these reveal the journey. No doubt, we want to correct those mistakes, but maybe we should take a moment and enjoy the rawness our students are letting out- that little bit of insight into who they really are.
My oldest daughter used to say "librarium" and my youngest called crayons "crowns." I tried to correct them some, but my wife smiled and told me to stop. That wouldn't last forever, so enjoy the imperfection because it revealed their innocence.
I miss librariums and crowns today.
When I hear the crack of emotion in a singers voice, or the fluency break in a student, I want to enjoy the reality revealed there. I connect with the person in their humanity, and their journey.
I find beauty in their imperfections because they are signs of growth in life and learning.
I teach Psychology, Sociology, World History Honors and Debate at College Station High School, as well as coach the debate team, sponsor the TED Ed Club, and I am the Lead Innovator for LEADS CSISD (A student leadership empowerment program for 5th-8th graders). I am an aspiring administrator.