It’s the end of the 3rd week after coming back from summer break.
How do I feel as a teacher? How do the learners in my class feel?
Having a new group of kids, a new group of parents, a new class setting. Everything is NEW. Wait…really? Do I copy and paste the old unit planner? Do I use the same resources? Do I use the same tools/strategies to assess the learners? Do I use the same teaching strategies?
I have been thinking about these questions a lot. I even complained that I did not have time to stop, think and reflect on my own teaching and learning practices in my class. But wait, the time is always there, that’s what I usually say to my kids when they told me that they didn’t have to read or work on the home assignment. The time is there but I should make the time for everything.
So, although I feel like I am having a list of things to do, I decided to stop and let myself reflect on the blog.
I started reflecting on the first 3-week at school and making a connection to what I read, heard and listened to.
As I reflected on my ‘Summer break is over’ shock, I remembered a post about how to manage teacher workload from Adam Hill. From the ten points which he shared, I believe I do or I used to do many of them. Used to? Yes, and that’s why I miss what I used to do. So, how can I deal with this? Noone can change unless I do. I should go back to do what I used to do. Do what I love doing and (TRY) to love what I do. That’s what my ‘life-long’ mentor told me a few days ago.
What do I love doing?
Just like a child, I love to play. I was reading this post from Sonya Terborg (Glad that I had a chance to meet her and joined her session about ‘Change Maker’ in Learning2 in Poland a few months ago) about playing. Why play? As Sonya wrote in her blog, playing lets kids (us) experience joy, sees others point of view and be creative and innovative. What do I consider ‘play’ for myself? Getting connected with people (Yes, I do not play alone). Reading and discussing how I can play with apps/tools/etc. Think of tools which can support the teaching and learning in my class.
Adam Hill wrote in his blog, ‘On a daily basis, I am inspired and motivated by teachers around the world. We share, discuss, debate and collaborate. On an ongoing basis, we learn together.‘ YES….that’s what I missed. I stopped doing this because I feel it’s too much. I neglected my own ‘excitement’ and that affects me.
YES….that’s what I missed. I stopped doing this because I feel it’s too much. I neglected my own ‘excitement’ and that affects me. I feel that I have done nothing new this year. I have a new group of kids with the different level of ability and I can’t expect them to perform the same like those whom I used to have. I have to find new tools and strategies for my class. I may refer to the ‘old’ unit planner, but I should find fresh ideas which I can adapt to the current class. I may use the same resources but think of ways on how kids can use it differently.
The REAL learning happens when you unlearn (Let go of the old ways of thinking and doing). – Tanmay Vora
This is a part of my learning journey. Have I unlearned? Am I willing to unlearn and relearn? What do I need to unlearn and relearn this academic year?
Who said letting go of old ways of thinking and doing is easy? BUT….it will enable us to be innovative and creative.
So how have I persuaded my brain from getting frustrated after the third week of school to ‘calming down’ phase? Do what I love and love what I do. I love playing and through playing, I learn, unlearn and relearn in order to be a better person….for myself and people around me. I should continue getting connected with PLN and find the ‘playground’ where I would enjoy playing.