Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Good Reads

My husband likes to tease me because he says I'm "obsessed with Facebook".  False.  Ok, partly false.  Truthfully, I do find myself scrolling through my newsfeed a bit more than I'd like to admit, but it's not always just to "like" photos of my friends sweet little babies or to take a funny Buzzfeed quiz (although, let's be honest, both of those are highly entertaining to me).  More often than not I have stumbled upon an article a friend posted, which leads to another article and then another.  

This past weekend it seemed like many teachers were using Facebook like I do because several of my teacher friends were sharing some truly amazing articles.  I wanted to share them here because I think they are not only encouraging, but empowering for teachers to read.

This article, published here, stopped my in my tracks.  I read it twice, just to absorb it all a little better.  The article is an open letter to classroom parents about THAT student: the kid who is angry, overly-active, loud, needy, aggressive.  The student I personally have had many times in my class, who can bring me to tears at the end of a particularly rough day.  The child that leaves me feeling exhausted over a battle that never should have been a battle in the first place.  The student who I swear will be personally to blame for my first gray hair.  The kiddo who warms my heart like no one else could when a little smile pops up on a usually clouded face because he learned how to write his numbers to fifty.

I started reading this article on my teacher pedestal, identifying with the author because I have all too often felt frustrated that I couldn't be brutally honest with all parents and guests who enter my classroom to explain about THAT student.  But as I continued to read, I was reminded of all the many reasons THAT student is THAT way.   Not that these reasons make THAT student suddenly easy to teach and reason with, but I was reminded to take a step back and look beyond the outbursts and tantrums.  To remember that his little heart needs just as much love, if not more, than even the most well-behaved student in class.  To think about responding to her defiant attitude with grace rather than anger.   I needed this article as a check-point as we complete another semester to remember my favorite part of teaching: the love and nurturing I have the opportunity to provide each day.

This article, found here, is all about Teacher Power (you know, like "girl power" but for teachers).  In response to an article published in Time Magazine about Rotten Apples (bad teachers) an assistant principal fought back against the scrutiny we hear all too often about how teachers are failing.  She is so sharp in her response, making me feel not only empowered by her stance to protect all educators, but to think that I share a profession with some seriously amazing people who will stop at nothing to help their students succeed.  Highly encouraging!

As we near Thanksgiving, I'm reminded once again how thankful I am to be a teacher.  I'm thankful I get to spend my days with little minds and hearts that will one day grow up and change the world around them.  I'm thankful I work with so many men and women who share my passion to make these little learners feel loved and cared for while also teaching them math and how to read.   I'm thankful that I can share my passion through technology to connect with other teachers who can help build me up, whether that's through blogs or articles on Facebook.

And ok, I'm thankful for Facebook too :)



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