I drive a Lexus but I don’t live in a Lexus world. My clothes and home furnishings are mostly hand-me-downs. The rusty-red hued shag carpet has endured many a footfall in its 30+ years on the floor. We bring stacks of books home from the public library instead of buying them at the bookstore. When it’s time to change the oil on the afore mentioned Lexus, I wait for a coupon so I can take it into Oil and Toil (not the real name).
We purchased the car when it was 5 years old from a woman who wanted a hybrid, so I didn’t even know where the Lexus dealer was when I received a recall notice for a minor repair. After doing a little research, I found the closest dealer and was genuinely welcomed by a friendly employee. After checking in, he led me to a leather sofa where I could correct math tests for the next hour and a half or so. He invited me to help myself to the coffee, tea, pastries, water and juices before making his way back, past the sparkling saltwater tank (where I found Nemo), March Madness on the big screen, and beautifully groomed, suited salesmen.
I sunk into the comfortable couch and thought, “I could get used to this.”
I had finished my coffee, the math tests, and was deeply engrossed in my book when I saw him returning. “I’m sorry this is taking longer than I said it would. If you can give me 10 more minutes I’ll have it washed for you and fill it up with gas.”
“Who would say no to that?” I wondered.
As I drove home, I kept thinking about my experience and wondering how it might translate into education. How does entrance into our schools provide students with a glimpse into a world they might not live in?
· *Two meals a day! I could get used to this.
· *Learning can be fun? I could get used to this.
· *My teacher thinks I’m smart. I could get used to this.
One of my students told me daily for a couple weeks that I was nice. She switched it up in week 3 saying, “Mrs. Sabo, I like how you treat us.” I hunkered down and asked her to explain. What she was essentially saying was… kindness feels good - and she could get used to it.
As teachers, we can provide our students with a glimpse into a world they can truly be part of, one of academic success and outstanding character. It is a profound responsibility. Let’s let our classrooms become their Lexus experience.