Teaching is an art. There is not a single answer to the question, “How should you teach?” There is an interconnection between a teacher’s heart, their mind, their technique, and their students. Thinking back to Professor Fitch, she taught with a grace and patience that allowed for laughter and levity while never losing sight of the lesson, when others may have focused on learning targets and classroom expectations. Laugh when there are moments that deserve laughter, and create moments for laughter if they’re absent. Finding humor in small things has helped me to maintain my sanity (arguably).
Celebrating successes is great, but don’t forget to celebrate grand failures when there is great effort involved. As a librarian, I am driven to celebrate literacy in all of its forms. Reading is the lifeblood of knowledge. Nothing will stifle learning faster than limiting reading to a perceived set of rules and barriers. Kids will read if they find what they enjoy, and they will find what they enjoy when they are encouraged to explore authors and topics and genres. My pragmatic self would be the first to admit that blind devotion and pointless cheering are a profound waste of time and energy. What I’m striving for is finding joy in things of this world, big and small. Finding joy in moments where it may be hiding quite effectively. I want my students to love reading and discovery. I want my staff to find joy in moments of success with technological tools, whether it’s with a whole class or an individual student. I want to cultivate an environment of joyful exploration, and celebration of moments is key to that vision.
Personal Vision & Mission Statement posts
International Society for Technology in Education. (n.d.). Standards for Coaches. Retrieved from http://www.iste.org/standards/iste-standards/standards-for-coaches
Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction. (2015, September 23). Charlotte Danielson’s Framework for Teaching. Retrieved November 26, 2015, from http://tpep-wa.org/the-model/framework-and-rubrics/instructional-frameworks/danielson-framework/
Ribble, M. (2014, June 25). Essential elements of digital citizenship. Retrieved from https://www.iste.org/explore/articledetail?articleid=101
University of Chicago Consortium on Chicago School Research. (2015). Surveys of CPS Schools. Retrieved from https://ccsr.uchicago.edu/surveys