For the past two days Jan and I have been attending a teacher's training seminar conducted by our friend Rachelle Martinez. Rachelle is Angela's sister and directs an elementary school in El Carmen, Mexico. The theme of the seminar yesterday was on recognizing and stepping up to our authority as teachers. In the first session yesterday some of the elementary teachers at our school expressed how difficult it is to teach when parents are standing in the doorway of their classroom or looking in through the window and trying to co-teach. We also talked about what being a proper authority in the classroom entails.
Today we discussed what it means to work as a team in overcoming obstacles and during the second session we watched the 2000 film Remember the Titans, starring Denzel Washington. This is one of my favorite films and so I was more than pleased to sit through it again. The film superbly illustrates the power of teamwork - especially after overcoming seemingly impossible odds. In the film Denzel Washington plays a man who has been given the job as head football coach at a newly integrated high school in Alexandria, Virginia in 1971. The new coach had to rise above the obstacle of racism to form his team and achieve victory in the state football championship. Based on a true story, the film was an inspiration to our teachers (despite the fact that they don't understand the rules of American Football!) and will hopefully serve as a constant reminder this year of the importance of being a united team of overcomers in our work as teachers.