Hard to Reach

One time or another we have been in contact with a hard to teach student. We see early signs of frustration. Some teachers will stop trying, while others try harder. As we reflect on our own teaching experiences, what kind of opportunities are we providing for students to feel successful?

Food for Thought:

  • Be honest and consistent with students. Show respect and trust in children’s abilities.
  • Maintain a positive attitude with students
  • Teach, Prompt, Reinforce positive behaviors and/or expectations
  • Recognize all successes

Motivation

More than likely we have all been in a meeting with our colleagues talking about student motivation and/or lack thereof. The word motivation derives from the Latin word movere, which means “to set in motion.” The root of motivation is motive which can be defined as inner drive, impulse, and incentive.  Therefore motivation can be thought of as self-generated and something that happens within; not something that is done. As we reflect on our own teaching experiences, what opportunities are we providing for students to feel motivated (self-driven).

Food for Thought:

  • Create a warm, supportive interpersonal relationship with students
  • Create learning situations and/or activities in which students are interested and able to meet with success
  • Structures environment with clear and concise expectations
  • Provide a safe learning environment, allowing students to take risks without fear of failure
  • Celebrate all successes and efforts
  • Be reflective of your own beliefs and perceptions about motivation

Speak or Listen

An anonymous source once said, “Speak in such a way that others love to listen to you. Listen in such a way that others love to speak to you.” As we reflect on our own teaching experiences, do we speak kindly of our students and families?

Food for Thought:

  • Kindness and Empathy matter
  • Increased opportunities for family and/or parental involvement
  • Recognize kindness and empathy
  • Active Listening

Life

An anonymous source once said, “Life is all about making mistakes and learning from them.” As we reflect on our own teaching experiences, what opportunities are we providing for students to learn from their mistakes?

Food for Thought:

  • Increased opportunities for peer-to-peer discourse activities
  • Increased opportunities for students to revise their work and/or thinking
  • Celebrate all successes with students and families

Change

An anonymous source once said, “You can’t spell CHALLENGE without CHANGE. If you’re going to rise to the challenge, you have to be prepared to change.” As we reflect on our own teaching experiences, what kinds of challenges are we working to overcome in order for our students to be successful?

Food for Thought:

  • Identify 1-2 areas to adjust in your teaching
  • Embrace change every step of the way by taking risks and asking questions
  • Celebrate all successes along the way

A Path or a Trail

An anonymous source once said, “Do not follow where the path may lead. Go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.” As we reflect on our teaching experiences, what opportunities are we creating for students to be successful?

Food for Thought:

  • Celebrate all successes
  • Reinforce positive behaviors and/or choices
  • Encourage students to take risks

Time to Adjust

A beauty of teaching is that, based on feedback, we can learn from our mistakes and make adjustments as needed. As we reflect on our teaching experiences, we must ask ourselves how receptive are we to feedback?

Food for Thought:

  • Adjust practices based on feedback
  • Collaborate with colleagues on Best Practices
  • Model Lessons and Reflection with Grade Level colleagues