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Sunday, July 13, 2008

Shifting Gears

I have been writing a lot lately about discontent and uncertainty but now I think I am ready to start shifting gears again. Every summer I think I am absolutely sick of teaching, I can't stand kids and I don't ever want to return to work but inevitably, I always find that near the end of my break I get caught up in planning and begin to get ready for work again.
I can feel this change beginning in me. It started with dread about how I was going to handle things but now I can feel that changing. I am starting to think about what must be done. I am thinking about the changes I want to make in how I do things in my classroom. I am planning ways to make the job ever more manageable. Many of the conclusions I have come to involve my students becoming more independent and mature. I think that this is going to be very good for them. There has always been a tendency in my school to coddle students as though they are much younger and lessncapable than they are. I too am guilty of making certain things too easy on kids even when I keep the work rigorous. I now have plans about how to change this and how to better prepare my students for their future jobs or schooling.
I am excited to make the changes. I wonder if I can keep my cool. Can I gain respect just by modeling it and asking for it? Will the kids that know me see how MS has changed and matured me?
I have dreamed of a time where I can walk into the classroom and get respect without a single threat or a raised voice. I think that time may be coming. In the past I have always been a little scared about what sort of freshman I might get. Now, I would like to think that this won't matter. I think the teacher is the single, greatest predictor of student achievement in a classroom. Last year I really got results. I would like to think that this year I will get good results again no matter who passes my classroom door but time will ultimately tell.

3 comments:

Keli said...

Nadja, I received your comment and I totally agree. You are so right. A diagnosis is difficult, but it definitely makes you reevaluate what is important. I remember when I was diagnosed, my doctor told me to make a list of what is important. The things that used to be so important (money, job, etc) ended up way down on the list. Just those few short words, "You have MS" totally turned my life upside down. But I reevaluated what is important, and I appreciate things much more now.

miz astrid said...

I'll be interested to hear about your new classroom techniques and their effectiveness. :)

Denver Refashionista said...

Oh, new techniques... One, no more late work I take home to grade. They finish in class and we edit together so they learn more and I save my free time. Two, all final work typed and submitted electonically, no messy paper anymore. Three, use of my newfound Spanish to call home whenever I feel like it. Four,no tolerance for any BS (they better leave it outside my room)...