Post 7 from the 30-Day Blogging Challenge: Who was or is my most inspirational colleague, and why?
This post is both easy and hard. It’s easy because I knew immediately who I wanted to write about. It’s hard, well, read on and you’ll see.
Margaret Munt has been my most inspirational colleague. We began teaching together 20 years ago. It wasn’t when we each began teaching, but rather when we became colleagues. We both taught multi-age first and second grade classrooms next to one another and immediately became partners and friends. There was an opening between our two rooms where our students moved easily to work with both of us at various times of the day.
Margaret’s strengths were evident from the beginning. She was the yin to my yang. She was the balance i needed. I’m detail-oriented, type A, and she well, was not. She was the one who got messy, was hands-on, designed elaborate art projects, and was a non-linear thinker. I didn’t realize how much I needed her to balance me and get me to lighten up!
Margaret had an amazing ability to focus, listen, and be present. She was there for me, but especially for her students. She connected, built relationships, and garnered respect from everyone. Students adored her and aspired to be like her.
Margaret was well-spoken, a natural leader. She represented the faculty in an articulate, confident, and educated manner. She had so many interests and passions and pursued them all with vigor. She was well-read, an amazing writer, an avid gardener, a horse lover, and adored her family. She had spunk, led us in song (I don’t sing!), and was so beautiful.
We taught side-by-side for 15 years when I ‘left’ her to take on the role of technology integration specialist. Margaret supported me in that move, despite how things would change for her as well as a result of my transition. She gave ME a gift when I left our team (which I wear daily) and we remained strongly connected.
Margaret passed away two years ago. She still influences me daily, both professionally and personally. I think of her all of the time.
We shared the love of books by Roald Dahl. Here’s one of her favorite Roald Dahl quotes:
“Those who don’t believe in magic will never find it.”
Margaret helped me believe in magic.