There is nothing like having another adult watch you, analyze everything you do for 8 hours a day, 5 days a week, for an entire semester…. that makes you (or me, at least) reflect on who you are as a teacher. What qualities do I hope she sees in me? How do I seem to someone else? (Perception *is* reality, you know.)… By nature, I am a very reflective person, but this definitely increases the intensity and frequency of my reflection.
So, here goes a partial list of what I think I am and who I hope I am….
1) Loving… and I don’t mean the fuzzy, touchy-feely, pet my kids and make excuses loving…. This is not kindergarten. I really do care about my kids. This is why at 7am I am out front saying good morning and smiling… even though I hate mornings… this is why in every weekly journal I write back to my children… something personal. this is why, on occasion, I do the hugging and petting… because my kids need it.
2) Fair… When I was student teaching, I had a mentor say to me, “I want my students to know I was fair.”…. I want that, too… even when that means I make an exception or tease one to get a result when I quietly talk to another. It’s all in what they need.
3)Flexible… If I have learned nothing else, it’s that I have to be flexible. I start out every day with a plan, but if it’s not working… I tweak it, or fix it… sometimes I just chuck the whole thing. I love input from other sources, tell me what you do that works or what you might do differently, I’ll give it a shot if it lets my kids learn more easily.
The boldness of asking deep questions may require unforeseen flexibility if we are to accept the answers. ~Brian Greene
What I hope gets over shadowed by all of this: my driven-ness. I have a job to do from 7-3:15 every day. I love input, but I am terrible at small talk… especially if I have to work really hard to get a response out of someone. This is really bad. It means that kids who are reticent probably see me as uncaring and that makes me very sad…. maybe I need a communication lesson from my counselor friend! She’s a pretty cool blogger, too…. sad that I don’t know how to link her… 🙂