Did you ever have a teacher who made a difference and had a lasting impact in your life? Recently, I met a teacher who is striving to do just that.
Kimber Lybbert is a mother of six and a National Board-certified teacher at Moses Lake High School. She relates to students and listens to what they have to say. Lybbert’s students encouraged her to write a book or create a TED Talk. She succeeded in option two. Her students invite us “to disenthrall ourselves from our own preconceptions about who teenagers are or should be and set aside judgement as we explore our shared humanity with them, side by side, with open minds and whole hearts.” Lybbert insightfully connects us with today’s youth in the TED Talk she recently delivered in Spokane, Washington.
Mrs. Lybbert encourages us to put faith and trust in the youth of tomorrow. “Not every kid has enough bravado to say, “Hey, mom, stop doubting my abilities. Stop flinching at the approach of challenges.”
Kimber questions, “Are we failing to encourage our youth and letting them know they are of immeasurable worth? Their ideas matter.” Here are three thoughts Lybbert’s students want us to know:
- You might think we are too young to make a difference, or that we don’t understand what’s going on in the world, but listen, we might surprise you. After all, an idea should not be invalidated by the age of its creator.
- You can’t treat us like infants and expect us to act like adults. Let us fail sometimes without freaking out. We’re gonna figure it out.
- We need security. We are scared about the future. We feel like the older generation doesn’t trust us. We don’t know if we trust ourselves.
“These are fantastic humans”, Lybbert shares. “Their stories reach down inside your core, draw the contents of your chest up through your sinus cavity, and lodge the debris somewhere behind your prefrontal cortex. They are beautiful and powerful and broken and patched together in ways that allow the best light of humanity to shine through them.”
We can give Generation Z youth the love, confidence, strength, and encouragement they deserve. “Remember the worth of souls is great in the sight of God.” (D&C 18:10)