It’s crazy how a simple compliment can change your whole perspective on something. There are many times in my new career – as in many new careers – where I have felt lost and had no idea what I was doing every day. There are millions of things I know I want to do in/with my classroom, but just not enough minutes in the day to prepare for everything and make sure I get through what I have to get through as well. I haven’t thought I was completely failing, but there is just more I want to do that I haven’t gotten to do yet. I can see the progress my students have made in their learning and even more progress I have noticed in their change of behavior from my first days in the classroom. When it comes to behavior, my class seemed crazy when I showed up on my first day. Now there are only a handful of moments of craziness every once in a while, as opposed to almost constant craziness. I am very proud of how far they have come, and I will continue to work to get them to meet my expectations.
As I said before, there are times when I feel completely lost and totally unprepared and it’s hard to begin to fix a problem when you do not even know where to begin. Today we had a professional development instructor going around the classrooms to show an example lesson on how to better use EBLI (Evidence Based Literacy Instruction) in our English/language arts lessons. The teacher has been in and out of our school several times this year. She did not teach an example lesson in my class today, but she did do a quick walkthrough while I was teaching. When I was on my prep hour she came back to compliment the change in behavior she had seen in my students since she came in before I began my teaching career. I couldn’t help but smile. After school the day the kindergarten teacher also came to me to say she has seen the same improvements and that the professional development teacher shared the compliments with her earlier.
Others in the building have offered similar kind words about my class’ improvements every so often since January. Even when I feel lost and unsure of where to go from here, it is a truly amazing feeling to know others are seeing the improvements my class has made along the way. It’s crazy how just a simple compliment can really change how someone feels about what they are doing. Definitely something I want to work on doing more for others.