A Good Start

It’s Friday evening.  I’ve had some pizza.  I’ve had half a glass of wine (it never takes much).  I’m feeling pretty good.  Overall, I’m pretty amazed at how smooth this first week back at school has been.

Normally, there is always a class that makes me go, “ugh.”  It’s either full of underperformers or has some special “gems” that love to challenge me. This week I didn’t have any of that.  All of my classes are good and have positive energy.  I do have some students who like to toe the line, but they are easy to rein in with little effort.  There were a few that I had to have a “chat” with about not turning in work, but they turned it in the next day (half credit, of course) and there was one sacrificial lamb (but he quickly redeemed himself and has been wonderfully well-mannered ever since).

What I am most amazed by is my growth as a teacher.  This is my sixth year, and every year it gets better, but I am still amazed by my confidence.  I can convey to the students that this is “my classroom.”  I don’t have to worry or be sarcastic; I can be firm and matter-of-fact.  Last term I didn’t lose my temper once (a record, really), and I feel like I can do it again.  Because of this confidence, they are less likely to challenge or question me. A teacher’s confidence breeds good behavior (not always, but mostly), and kids need to know that someone’s in charge and has their best interest at heart.

I am looking forward to this term and discovering what new things it will bring. I am looking forward to knowing where these kids are now and seeing how far they can go.  I am looking forward to the challenges I can bring them and the challenges they, inevitably, will bring me.

15 thoughts on “A Good Start

  1. Sounds like you’re off to a great start! (What a ridiculous comment… I might as well have liked the post without reading it. It’s titled “A Good Start” for crying out loud!)

    1. Ha! Thanks! Sometimes I catch myself writing those kinds of comments and having those same kinds of thoughts. After I posted my thoughts about “liking”, many of my friends made it a point to tell me that they read my posts. It’s been pretty funny. One “liked” it before she read it just to be rebellious.

    1. That is very kind of you to say that. I am very fortunate to work at a school where many of the teachers do their best to engage and challenge their students.

  2. That’s really great! But you should probably call all their parents and warn them to check under beds for pods. (kidding)

    I think the level of interest you’re getting from students says a lot about you as a teacher. When I used to visit classes to tell students about the writing center I worked in, I could tell how good the teacher was by how much the students paid attention and asked questions of me. Alert, interested students always come from good teaching.

    1. Very true! The take over of the pod people has just begun! That’s an interesting observation about teaching and teachers, but it makes sense that the kids would reflect the attitude and atmosphere in the room. Do you still help others with writing?

      1. I’ve tutored writing and reading off and on for 18 years. I just took a part-time job tutoring online, so I am officially no longer unemployed. Now I’m underemployed.

        I have been thinking about hanging out my shingle as a writer/editor/tutor and trying to earn some money that way. But I have to ponder for a while longer.

  3. You sound like a fabulous teacher. I struggle to keep a group of 2nd and 3rd graders in line long enough to teach them something about the library, but school doesn’t start for us for three more weeks. Fwew!

    1. Thank you, but I still have a long way to go before I can join the ranks of “fabulous teachers”. I’ve worked with your age group before, and, man, what a task! Their energy, antsiness, and random questions that wear me out (and probably you, too!).

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