Play it again, Sam…

Hello Friends,

Our founder had a rather interesting week, here’s her story:

As you all know, I teach “at-risk” youth. I’m constantly getting new students. One of my newest students actually had an older sibling in the program who didn’t exactly succeed, lets call her Sage. Being in an “at-risk” program can be hard enough, and having to constantly prove that you aren’t the same type of student as your sibling just adds to the stress of school. From the start, I could tell that my student was trying to prove to her fellow students and the faculty that she wasn’t her sister.

In my classes, my students write, everyday, in their journals.  The topics range from current events, to quote interpretations, to personal anecdotes, opinions, the list goes on and on.  They confide some of their deepest secrets, their hopes, their dreams, their pain, their joy, it’s amazing how a pen and paper allows them to open up.  Being that they have trusted me in reading these writings, I find it’s only fair for me to respond.  I encourage, respond, ponder, and ask questions for pretty much ever entry.

It’s rather time-consuming.

But it’s totally worth it; I wouldn’t change a thing.

Anyway, when reading Sage’s journal, I noticed a piece that she did about music, and her Dad.  She spoke of the childhood memories that she had with her father, as he taught her to play the piano.  She wrote how she believes in the power of the music, it’s ability to make everything seem possible, its ability to get one through the strongest of times. She wrote how she’d love to make her passion for music into a career, but she knew that it was a silly dream.

Silly dream?


I don’t think so.

So I asked Sage if she played the piano.  She was startled, and then wanted to know how I knew that.  I told her that she wrote it in her journal, and she was like, oh, yeah. It’s silly. I assured her that it wasn’t, and that I wanted to hear her play on Tuesday, (it was Friday, she had the whole weekend AND Monday to mentally prepare.) She protested for a bit, saying that she didn’t like to play in front of people, but after a few moments she realized that I wasn’t taking no for an answer. 

Tuesday morning rolled around, and until I actually got to the school, I had forgotten about our piano conversation, and I figured I was wrong.  She was bright-eyed and so excited when I got to school, wanting to know if I still wanted to hear her play.  I said absolutely, but she had to do a writing assignment first. She completed the assignment dutifully, and we went in search of our baby grand.

Sage played a song for me that she had composed herself.  She told me that she played it at her grandfathers funeral, and she had not played it in a couple of years.

It was beautiful.

I have never seen that child so happy, so free….it was pure bliss. 

I’ve now made it my personal mission to help her pursue this ability to wherever she wants it to go. Silly dreams? Well, they’re the best ones, aren’t they?



3 thoughts on “Play it again, Sam…

  1. Pingback: Baby. Steps. « The Write Teacher

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