Students should be uncomfortable at some point during every day. Students should be challenged with rigorous work. Students should be held accountable for their learning. Students should have high expectations held for them. Students should not ever feel "safe" from having to demonstrate their level of understanding. Somehow there is a focus of students feeling comfortable, having fun, and loving everything that they do in class. However, these things are not what is necessarily best for students.
Think about your own goals that you have accomplished. Were those goals accomplished in your comfort zone? Or at some point were you uncomfortable in order to achieve them? I am VERY uncomfortable while I do my Insanity Max 30 workout. I am uncomfortable when I turn down an extra glazed donut. (Although, I was not uncomfortable this morning, because I definitely ate one). I am uncomfortable sometimes when I am public speaking. I am uncomfortable when I make sacrifices or "be the bigger person" for the sake of meaningful friendships and relationships. I can go on and on about my many uncomfortable moments. However, these uncomfortable moments have resulted in some of the greatest things in my life.
So remember, your students DESERVE to be uncomfortable. They deserve to be pushed and challenged with rigorous work and high expectations. Not only will the uncomfortable moments lead them to academic achievement, but it will also prepare them for challenges and obstacles in life. Let's not contribute to our students believing life is easy and that all of their goals will be easily achieved. Let's contribute to our students believing they can definitely achieve their goals, but they may uncomfortable sometimes in the process.
I hope you and your students have a GREAT and UNCOMFORTABLE year!