When my son was finishing 4th grade he was assigned to a teacher who got married and switched districts over the summer. We waited, then we got the letter introducing us to his 5th grade teacher: Douglas Elder.

I did what any self respecting mother would have done, I googled him, and this is what I found:

I was so excited for my kid. I watched this video of a super cool Christian Rock Band and thought,
‘This guy is authentic. I don’t know if he can teach a 5th grade curriculum, but he is authentic.’

It is hard to be authentic.
I guess if it was easy Mr. Elder wouldn’t need a day job to support his passions.

But passions change.
We went to school early to see if any help was needed.
Douglas ElderMr. Elder’s whole family was there: his wife and two kids, helping him set up the classroom.

I have to imagine that being a traveling musician and a great father are concepts difficult to reconcile.

He took the day job, but brought his authenticity with him.
He played guitar in the classroom a bit. He had quirky but awesome ways to keep the kids on track. I never heard him yell or even get riled up. And my kid had an awesome year.

Authenticity comes from God.
It flows through us easily and abundantly when we are doing what we are meant to do.

Thanks Doug for showing my son, through your actions, the beauty and wonder of an authentic man.


Posted in Art of Teaching, Stages of Mastery and tagged , , , , , , , , , .

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