erin ahnfeldt

Listening to Life

Goodbye For Now

Goodbye For Now

There’s a cardboard sign on my office wall that says “Home”.  The word is scribbled in pen, and it’s well used, bent in different places.  One of my students made it while hitchhiking back to Colorado.  He showed it to me after his adventures, and I asked if I could...
Jazzy’s Whiteboard Words

Jazzy’s Whiteboard Words

Being fifteen isn’t easy.  Homework piles up, parents gets stressed about grades, friends create drama, and in the midst of all that noise, life gets lonely.  With everyone trying to survive the tidal waves of life crashing down, it’s easy to feel unseen, especially...
The Empty Desk

The Empty Desk

Connections make life meaningful.  They’re the catalyst for relationships, the reason people choose certain jobs, and a great way to make a boring subject like English a little more interesting. Every time one of my students says, “Hey, that’s like. . .” and connects...
Mackenzie’s Request

Mackenzie’s Request

There used to be a hideous, blue line of tape running down the middle of the hallway at my school. All last year, students were told to stay on one side or the other depending on which way they were going, and for the most part, they did. When they were told to wear...
Nightmare on I-70

Nightmare on I-70

Icy, snow-packed roads didn’t used to scare me. Living in Colorado, I got used to driving in winter weather—maybe a little too used to it. But that all changed on Interstate 70 a couple of weeks ago. My wife’s parents invited our family to join them for a ski trip in...
Reaching My Limit

Reaching My Limit

I’m weak. There are limits to what I can do, and I’m becoming more aware of that as I get older. In the middle of a good conversation with a student, I might feel like I’m Superman flying through the air, but I’m not. All it takes is a failed lesson plan or a student...