Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Visitors.

A friend posted a status on Facebook that read "It's the kind of day when I count my blessings on one hand.... feeling discouraged."

We've all been there.  For teachers, April is a tough month -- especially late April.  Sure, there are the interruptions for standardized testing, followed by AP Simulations, AP exams, and field trips that cause altered schedules as large chunks of classes are away with another teacher, leaving those behind wondering what we should teach to a class missing 70% of the students.  

Add to that, the panicked "we only have fourteen more classes left!" mentality that makes the ever-so-far-away-summer seeming like a locomotive threatening our untimely demise.

Surprise!

I've been working to put my proverbial ducks in a row earlier this year, staying on top of the grading, trying to display the surface of my desk more purposefully, and actually setting dates on my Outlook Calendar for NEXT year to make sure that things (allegedly) will be easier, and that I can learn from my current mistakes.  I'm gathering data to share with my administrator in my end of year evaluation, and thinking and working smarter -- not harder -- (again, allegedly.)

About ten minutes before the end of second period today, a colleague magically appeared in my room.  Now, Dave is not the type of guy who enters -- or departs -- any room unnoticed, so it was fairly amazing how he blended in and sat down, joining in the student-led conversation on the effects of historical and societal events on the evolution of fictional teenage characters.

Edutopia posted an interesting prompt today:  The #1 thing that inspires me as an educator is:_____________.

It seems easy to say "MY STUDENTS!", yet we all know that there are days when the inspiration by students is less than, well, inspirational.  

So my answer is:

The #1 thing that inspires me as an educator is fascinating, unscripted, enlightening, conversation where teachers and students are equals in the discussion.

Thanks, Dave, for stopping by, and inspiring me today.  I hope to reciprocate sometime soon!