Face of Life is Good | Emily Wikle


Last Summer, we met Emily when she nominated her friend Luke as her Hero of Optimism. Luke was just a pre-schooler in her mom’s classroom when they met. Soon after, he was diagnosed with Leukemia and she took on an an active role along with his family to help get in back on his feet. Seeing how he reacted to overcome this challenge, is a constant reminder for her to live everyday of her life to the fullest. His optimism inspired hers, and today she is a Hero of Optimism to her 3rd grade class in Indiana. Luke, Emily and her students are genuine proof of what you focus on grows, and what can happen if you choose to grow the good.

Learn more about how Emily is inspiring optimism to her students.

What’s the more important lesson a student has taught you?


The most important lesson that a student has taught me is simplicity and loving everyone you encounter. I have students that come from a wide range of backgrounds and cultures. When I look at my third grade kids, so many of them simply just love waking up every morning, coming to school, and being with friends. We often forget how much a child can teach us about life and appreciating the simple things. So many of my kids have taught me that! 

Who inspired you to become a teacher?

My mom has inspired me to become a teacher. Ever since I was a little girl I have wanted to be a teacher, and my dream has come true! My mom used to be a third grade teacher and now teaches preschool. She spent so much time with my sister and I growing up at home doing crafts with us and teaching us the love for learning. She inspires me everyday by showing me her love for teaching and working with kids. I like to say we come as a package, because so much of my Life is Good classroom was put together by her! She is one incredible women and shares the same passion that I do, and I got it from her! 

What has been your most rewarding moment in your teacher career?


My most rewarding moment as a teacher would be watching the students gain self confidence and realize that they all have a gift to share. It seems so simple, but I love watching them grow from day one to the end of the year. Also, I started a Girls Club at my school last year, and watching them gain confidence in themselves and providing service to others is rewarding to watch! 

What does the word optimism mean to you?

I talk about the word optimism at the beginning of every school year to teach the kids the mindset we should all have in the classroom and the motto we go by. I think an optimist is someone that simply just always looks at the positives. We all know that we are going to have good days and bad days, but an optimist tries to find the good in EVERYDAY and in everybody. 

Do you consider yourself an optimist?  Why or why not?

I do consider myself an optimist! I’ve always been a happy person in general, but when I met Luke, I even more so became one. I feel that as a teacher, you have to be that positive face and role model right when those students walk in your doors. Some of them come from backgrounds that’s hard to imagine at such a young age, so they look to me for that happiness. Luke has made me realize that someone else out there always has it worse than you, so each day I wake up, I know that life is good and everything will be okay no matter the circumstances! 

What does the phrase “Do what you love. Love what you do.” mean to you?

img_0750-copy“Do what you love, love what you do.” I actually have this quote up really big in my classroom! The kids and I talk about what this means at the beginning of the year and refer back to it often. I explain to them that life is too short to not do what you enjoy every single day! When you’re doing something you love, you will be successful in it. You’re always going to have fun in life and enjoy the ride if you’re doing what you love! 

Life is good because…

of family, friends, and opportunities! So often I give my students that quote in our Morning Meeting circle and they have to fill in the blank. It’s so special to hear all of what they have to say! Family and friends is a frequent one, as life is so grand with both of them in it! Opportunities because each day is never the same, and we never know the kind of adventure life will take us on. We may not understand it at the moment, but if we’re patient, we will enjoy the ride and find out one day why it happened!

Become a Face of Life is Good and Share Your Favorite Life is Good Moment