Reflections on the experience of this school year.
From Wednesday 22 June the State Exams began and I accompany my students of the fifth class in this last “test”. This year I feel very strongly the responsibility to be up to the task, I feel that this exam still so terribly and unnecessarily structured must become their realization. Perhaps because the boys arrive there after two and a half years of pandemic, first perceived as “an apocalypse” and now already derubricated by the general interest or perhaps because we are in the middle of a war, also this in a very short time transformed into something ordinary, to be forgotten soon, because in short, there is but what do you want to do!
It was a special but also very intense year in which, after all, I am the one who was guided by the students. I sailed on sight without paying too much attention to the contents but letting their needs, their curiosities, their requests be the wind that moved our small big ship of which we shared the helm. The external reality put us to the test and so we tried together to transform it into an opportunity to seek, to understand, to grow. If we talked about war or how we come to conceive of its “normality” then we read M;arinetti’s Futurist Manifesto (<<Other than words in freedom prof! This is delirium in freedom!>>); if the assembly on sexuality was suspended maybe we started from La Lupa of Verga (another beautiful character who despite the context was highly careted about the prejudices of the village!) and ended with Il Gelsomino notturno of Pascoli (<<Prof but this Pascoli some problem with sex has it!>>)
In short, I tried to be with them, to get out of the “role” (which in reality is always a bit tight to me) and I did not do it with a reasoned choice but because they brought me there. <<What are we talking about today prof? Where are we going?>> and they looked at me with that air a little amused and a little desperate that forced me to leave the moorings again, the reassuring ones of the lesson and the solid contents, to venture into sometimes stormy waters even if very funny. Maybe that’s the thing I like the most. These guys gave me a gift, a beautiful gift, because in front of an external communication that built day after day a banal return to “normality” as if nothing had happened, which invited us and invites us to swallow events, stories, lived as chopping machines, which denied us the right to “feel”, to be sad, anguished or angry, they taught me to share an “other” space, to demand it, to defend it as an opportunity, because in one way or another we had to swim in it. We wrote, we laughed, we “argued” with passion, we looked for images and words that corresponded to us, we built a new way of being at school. I do not know if we realised this while we were in the waves, but now that we are at the end of the day, the meaning of this year seems very clear to me and it is a good feeling. In a few days they will finish high school and I will see them move away to other oceans, we will have to rightly separate but I am not sad, because I carry on me the beauty of their gifts and the deep awareness that mine is a wonderful job.