Grateful: Five For Friday #1

June 3, 2016 , In: TEACH

It’s always good to be grateful, isn’t it? This is the first of what I hope will be many ‘Five For Friday’ posts where I will count my blessings for the week.

‘Nobody knows the trouble…’ is my standard sigh to myself when I feel friends or family do not understand the emotional endurance and mental capacity needed to teach and care for students. Though that gets me down at times, for the most part I’m content that God knows (plus my husband and teacher friends).

The great moments often outweigh the struggles, making it always worth it. I was thinking the other week, ‘What if I become a full-time travel blogger?’ I was imagining me and my husband cruising along Halong Bay, making photographs and writing articles… but what quickly cut through this daydreaming?

My heart sank at the thought of not being part of students’ lives!

There are other things that are not on this list but here are some of the things I am most grateful for this week…


Glorious weather! The mornings were freezing but with the afternoon sunshine, we had a couple of sessions on the grassy hill outside our classroom. The photo shows students practicing their Readers’ Theater performance. They definitely enjoy the chance to shine and as we are nearing the end of term, tiredness sinking in, it’s great to have opportunities that allow them to be active, silly and still learning all at the same time!


 Happy report writing! FB final

We’re onto the second draft of student reports. In our school, the first draft gets proofread by your buddy, another teacher. The second draft goes to an external proofreader! To the surprise of colleagues, I’m very positive about the whole process and thus, my post, ‘Happy Report Writing’. I have to say that this time around seemed the least time-consuming too. I wonder if my constant writing through blogging helps.


Garma Festival 2007

Garma Festival 2007

We’ve been learning about the indigenous peoples of Australia and at our Level Assembly this week we had a very special guest speaker – my husband! Cameron shared about his love for the Yolngu people in Arnhem Land as he has had a chance to meet many of them during the annual Garma Festival. He’s been there three times as an official photographer and is excited to be going back this year!

Cameron teaches photography to university students so I briefed him beforehand on how different teaching 8-10 year olds would be. He taught them the Yolngu words for yes (Yo!) and no (Yaka), brought artefacts like a stone knife (very cool) and showed photos from the festival. As you can imagine, the kids got very excited in parts. Cam was surprised that he was nervous at the start, remarking that it felt like he was in front of thousands of students. There were 160. Very proud of you, Mr Herweynen!


The joy of teaching small groups. I really love getting to know my students more when we’re in small teaching groups. I get to see where they are at, help them with the next step and see them grow! When one student goes from, ‘This is so difficult!’ to ‘I get it!’ in that one session – I do a happy dance inside.


winter hair winter scarf

A haircut and a warm scarf. Winter’s probably not the best time to cut your hair short but I went for it! And I feel lighter. We also got me this very warm scarf that’s been doing its job beautifully. That said, I’ve been sick the whole week but the celebration is, I have not had to take a day off. It’s like God gives me just enough to last another day. I did have to bail on our team meeting, but thankfully, my colleague Tom is very gracious and ran the meeting in my behalf. Plus, our team is just always awesome.

What are you grateful for this week?


Thanks to Kacey of Doodle Bugs Teaching for this link up. Check out other teachers’ posts! 

And thank you to my husband for his awesome photos from Garma Festival and of me.

Questions and comments

  1. Reply

    That scarf looks like the most comfortable thing ever! I love the perspective you shared in this post. I’ve started keeping a gratitude journal and it’s really helped me to remember that there is good in every day if you seek it out!

      • Rachel
      • June 6, 2016

      Appreciate your visit, Marianna! A gratitude journal is a great idea :)

Rachel Herweynen

Teacher & Traveller

Alive because of Jesus - a teacher, traveller and wife of a photographer. I write to learn, to help and to be thankful.

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