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Since it is the start of the new school year I am talking to my piano students about their new teachers and classrooms. One young lady informed me with great delight that she had gotten the one teacher in the school considered to be the very nicest. Now I know this school and I know that just about every teacher there is wonderful. These folks are really passionate about kids and teaching so I am curious as to what has this teacher standing above the others in the students’ minds.

My little pianist tells me with wide eyes and great joy that her teacher lets kids sit under the table during reading time. She also lets students take off their shoes. Not only that she puts on soothing music during tests and at quiet time! This dear girl even went on to say that she has had to confess to her teacher that there have been times when she was home and she wished she was at school!!!

This stuff is fascinating to me because it shows us how simple and free joy is. Joy can be made from gestures of kindness and understanding, respect, freedom, you name it, but it does not have to come from so many of the places we go looking for it.

My joy comes from just listening to this little girl delight in the experience of an adult who offers an awareness of what it is to be the one not in power.