Naomi had spent some of the morning preparing her class for their visitor - her german shepherd and guide dog lay where she always did in the dog bed near her desk, and Naomi leaned against the front of her desk as she spoke to her students. She had a student teacher who was actually a student, herself, getting hours in. On the board, there was a list of a couple dozen things that they could do themselves, to help other people - while being careful about strangers. Some were more general ideas, but there were a few creative ones, as well. Her classroom was decorated fairly differently than the average one. The quotes and sayings around the room weren’t the typical ‘shoot for the moon’ banners.
Naomi had one that simply said 'kindness and compassion’ around a square celtic knot, and the definition to both words on it, as well. One simply said 'self awareness.’ And one was a quote: In what you say of another, apply the test of kindness, necessity, and truth - and let nothing pass your lips without a 2/3 majority.
She taught them that quote on the first day, and it was always written on a section of the blackboard above where their homework was written. She also had them write it in their agendas. She, of course, explained what it meant after asking what they thought it did. To Naomi, kids were just awful these days and it’s because everyone taught them to better themselves. Be smarter, do better. Naomi believed by also teaching kindness and compassion in their students, and helping them to understand what it meant to be self aware, they could feel better about themselves - and that lead to doing better in school and with self confidence. And so far it seemed to be working. She smiled when she heard someone appraoch the doorway, her student teacher letting her know it was their guest. “You must be Mr. Bengal. Please come in.” She left her folding cane on her desk, knowing her classroom like the back of her hand, and walking towards the door, stopping a few feet from it and extending her hand. “It’s a pleasure to meet you. My class has been looking forward to your visit all morning. Though I suspect it’s also because they don’t want to do math.” That got a few laughs from her kids.