Justin Minkel Tag

A shelf grid of many Russian nesting dolls

Show Students Who They Could Become by Accepting Their Full Selves

By Justin Minkel

My mom is a play therapist and a miracle worker. Her secret power sounds simple: She absolutely accepts children as they are. Not as their teachers, classmates or parents wish they would be. As they actually are — in all their turbulent, disruptive, exasperating glory.

The children she works with throw rocks, scream in class and bite the other kids. When they throw rocks at her, she says, “You are really strong to be able to throw those rocks so far!” When they scream as loud as they can, she says, “That’s amazing that you can get out all your anger like that. I wish I could do that!”

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Questions to Ask Yourself as the School Year Winds Down

By Justin Minkel 

Think of a school year as a human life. It has a birth, messy and hopeful and new. It has a death, too. That last day will soon come when the individual personalities who make up our class will never be together as a class again. In between, a lot happens: new abilities acquired in fits and starts, a midlife crisis or two when it all feels hard and hopeless, and some peace near the end with all that was accomplished and all that wasn’t.READ MORE

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