Sunday, April 25

A Teacher's Ego (Yep, I've got one!)

As the end of year draws closer, time passes too quickly for most teachers.  We are frantically trying to meet curriculum goals and making sure we prepare our students for the next school year.  Although some teachers may not want to admit it, I want my students to shine for their next teacher, and I like when it reflects back on me.  Yep, I’ve got an ego and I’m proud of the work I do.  I also like feedback.  Call me greedy!

On Saturday, I met one of my former students, E and her mom for breakfast at a local diner.  After hugs and recovering from seeing the increase in height – she is almost as tall as me – we slid into our booth, ordered pancakes, French toast, and omelets. (Love diner food!) Then, I received my gift!  Mom handed me E’s report card, which admittedly, I practically grabbed out of her hands.

Through looping, I was E’s teacher for three years.  I knew from the start that she had extraordinary ability hidden behind shyness and beautiful blue eyes.  She was a bit younger than the other students and building her confidence was one of my goals.  During fourth grade, our last year together, I moved her to fifth grade math in order to challenge her gifted math ability.  She met every challenge.

We are a small private school, and almost all of my students transitioned into much larger settings.  E was accepted into a very large and prestigious private school that is known for its academic excellence.  I was confident that she would do well, but couldn’t wait for the “official” report.

As expected, she is successful.  She is excelling in all areas and she made a smooth transition.  From the incredibly detailed written report, it appears as if all of E’s teachers recognize and embrace her gifts. 

While all of this is the part of the reflection I spoke of earlier, the best gift and validation came from E’s Mom who said, “You are the one who really prepared her for fifth grade.”  Ahhh… feels so good!

You’re never too old for positive reinforcement; it really strokes the ego.  Don’t we all like to be validated?



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