I stood in the doorway, in the hall and in my classroom greeting my students this morning as usual.

When my students come into my classroom, there is no morning work. It’s an opportunity to for them to laugh, talk, and socialize with their friends.

As I stood smiling at their interactions, I came across a few sad faces.

One at a time I sat on the floor with each student.

Today I didn’t care about a schedule.

Today I didn’t care that I had to start right on time.

Today, my priority was nurturing my students.

What did I learn?

One student didn’t sleep well without his nightly family bedtime story.

I stepped back inside my room and my eyes landed on the perfect book on the bookshelf.

“Five Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed.”

As I read in my most animated voice, the student laughed and at least for a few moments forgot the sadness and tiredness that consumed him.

One student’s parent was traveling and right in the heart of a hurricane.

She felt reassured when I held her and wiped away her tears. We made a deal. When she thought about her dad she could get a hug from me. Later that week, she made a card for him.

And the best moment ever?

The moment she came running down the hall to tell me he was home!

When we stop focusing on all the things we have to do, we can see the things we need to do.