show me, teach me, blog me

Closing the Teach For America Blogging Gap
Aug 17 2010

Year 4, day 1

When I really think that this is my 4th year at my school, it boggles my mind. I was thinking about all the teachers at my school and there are only 5 classroom teachers, 2 specials teachers, 2 coaches, 2 title 1 teachers and 1 support staff who have been there longer than I have. Wow. I have been there long enough to see the entire administration change multiple times.

It was really nice to see my students again. I’m so happy that I looped, it was such a relaxing start to the year. I was able to make a big fuss over the kids who passed the MAP test last year, and give the good news that NONE of my kids scored below basic on the math portion and only 2 scored below basic on the communication arts test. We are so close and if we keep growing at the same rate from last year we will see amazing test scores.

I am so proud of the 4 first year TFA corps members at my school who made it through their first day. Some had better days than others. My teammate, the TFA corps member who I also teaching 4th grade, did an amazing job. She was so sweet with the kids, yet firm. I was so proud of her, and I just know that she will be a fantastic teacher.

I get such a kick out of reading my blog from the fall of 2007. I believe I made a statement that said “I will not be teaching beyond my 2 year commitment.” I was so lost, so unsure of myself. I was afraid and the kids saw that and fed off of my energy. When I was talking to a colleague that had a bad day, I was honest. I told her that tomorrow will probably be worse, and it will get worse before it gets better. I told her I cried every single day for months, but here I am, 4 years later. I’ve outlasted dozens, maybe even a hundred other teachers who have walked through those doors this past 3+ years. The kids are so used to people giving up on them, last year a teacher quit after 3 days. The best thing is to go home, cry if you need to, and reflect on what went wrong. Then come up with a plan for tomorrow. Whatever the plan, just try something different. Rinse and repeat. Just come in day after day, show the kids you are a human being, but also that you will not give up on them like so many others have before. You are capable. Reach out to others, talk to anybody who will listen, try anything they suggest, just don’t give up.

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    An Elementary School Teacher in the Show Me State

    St. Louis
    Elementary School
    Elementary Education

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