Welcome to a new school year, Teachers!
When I worked in a public school system as a teacher, or a counselor, I began the school year with a vision for the year. I started doing this my second year of teaching when a very supportive principal shared his habit of setting yearly goals. He would spend his summer reflecting on the gaps in his teaching and then set goals for the following school year to address those. That’s how I began also, but quickly moved into a more affirmative visioning.
I think most of us spend our summers reflecting, taking workshops to grow our skillsets, developing new units of study, so it wasn’t difficult to add a reflective piece. This process may sound familiar to many of you:
- It’s easy to reflect on our gaps, but I liked to reflect on those days, units, lessons that went really well because that’s what I want more of in my classroom. What was the overall mood in the room? What caused the students to be so engaged? In other words, what went right?
- I bring back those days in my memory during meditations, prayers, daydreams…and I’d really let that soak into my brain cells.
- I’d set the new year intention of experiencing every day like those memories.
I think we all realize…not quite right. Because what normally came up during my reflection stage were things like this: I brought the attitude that day…I was excited, interested, accepting, and calm when I walked into the building, knowing somehow that this was going to be a great day.
Measure your success in improvement…one more class today than yesterday that was engaging, exciting, and fun.
Don’t aim for perfection…because perfect doesn’t exist, so seeking it takes the fun out of bubbles, let alone school!
Remember to love your students, because until you have their hearts, you can’t possibly engage their minds.