The Power of Encouragement Within SPASH

Jessica Balthazore

A picture of a SPASH home football games
showing how teamwork is used to support each other.

Encouragement is an essential part of a student’s life. Students need multiple teachers they trust to talk to, not just one. Supportive teachers make connections with students that affect them even after the class has ended. Even if they are having a bad day, teachers let it pass and apologize later on. Students need to feel like they are cared for by teachers in SPASH. However, teachers are too busy with curriculum to realize this. Conversations between students and staff allow a release of bottled up emotions. Due to this, they can feel better about tough situations they may be going through.

Encouragement doesn’t have one meaning because everyone has different views. “[Encouragement means] having the ability to be able to fight through something without letting the boundaries get in your way,” says sophomore, Landen Maas, from SPASH. He sees encouragement as a way of getting through life. On the other hand, an anonymous junior at SPASH sees encouragement differently. “…Beneficial and commentary/addition to things. The “Good job” at the end of a paper.” Even though people explain encouragement differently, in the end they still agree that encouragement is the act of giving and receiving support.

In SPASH, encouragement is needed in the classroom. Football player, Landen Maas, states, “In football you gain a sense of brotherhood with the other players…” He believes that his teammates have his back no matter what. He goes on to explain how the players really push each other to be their best in and out of the classroom. “Otherwise in school I tend to push myself more in classes that I struggle in but I think the teacher that pushes me the most is Ms. Brinkman just because she is so positive all the time about everything.” This supports Ms. Brinkman’s idea of trying to give encouragement in classes because she believes that it brings positivity to the classroom.

Everyone can see and feel the change of encouragement.  For example, Ms. Brinkman, an English teacher at SPASH, explains how some students struggle in class because they have been told that in the past they are not good at a subject. She goes on to state that, “Having the correct encouragement can help students believe in themselves. There may be times when students don’t want to try but students that want to try can achieve so much.”  She expresses her idea that with encouragement and believing in themselves, students who want to perform well will do so. 

The same feeling is felt from an anonymous junior when she states that receiving encouragement can make the biggest difference, “…when a “Superior” tells you that you did well on something and even if you did bad they tell you that it is okay. ” Even students’ personal encouragement makes them do better, “I feel it does, it raises your confidence and when you go into something confident you usually end up doing better in the end.” Says Landen Maas. This supports Ms. Brinkman’s prior statement when she states that confident students perform better.  Testimonies from students and teachers at SPASH prove that encouragement can build confidence and help a person perform better in life.

Some may take encouragement in a different way, but in the end, encouragement is essential. Overall students need additional help from teachers to feel like they can accomplish great things in life. In general, SPASH students feel they don’t get enough encouragement from most of their teachers. Having connections with encouraging people helps all of the people in the situation just by stepping in and giving support.