Saturday, April 13, 2013

Lasting Impressions

Have you ever wondered what students will remember from school?

I wonder this often. I bump into former students every once in a while and we talk about memories and experiences.  The answers vary from individual to individual.  Recently I bumped into a couple of my former students.  The conversations were enlightening and entertaining.  

The first conversation was with Savanna.  Savanna was a sweet fifth grader that did well academically and seemed to always enjoy school.  Savanna started our conversation by asking if I remembered when she sang the Star Spangled Banner.  I chuckled, and said yes.  She told me that she'll never forget singing in front of the class.  Savanna also talked about our daily brain breaks and she mentioned our class field trip to Sauder Village.

The second conversation was with Jacob.  Jacob was far different from Savanna; school was a chore and he didn't always want to be at school.  I asked him if he was ready to graduate.  He emphatically said, "Absolutely!"  I then asked him what he was going to do after he graduated.  Jacob told me that he was going to enlist.  And I told him I was proud of him.  Jacob then said, "Thank you."  I asked him why he was thanking me,  and he said, "Do you remember going on bike rides after school? You listened to me and made school fun."

I often wonder what impression have I left on my students.  I know what I hope for:  I hope for students to leave better than when they arrived.  I hope students will move to the next level feeling smarter, self-confident, as improved citizens and students that love to learn.

Day in and day out educators teach lessons where the goal is to build from one lesson to the next. We all aim for mastery and for students to be ready for the next level.  In the big scheme of things these lessons are essential to help educate our students.  When it is all said and done I believe those day to day lessons will be forgotten...to a degree.  I think back to what my former students told me and I believe what is remembered is a combination of significant events, field trips, continuous patterns and personal connections.



Growing up as a teenager I used to play golf with my grandfather on a nightly basis. We talked about everything and nothing, we had our own connection.  I believe life is about relationships.  It is about the connections we make and the experiences that happen.  We all connect on different levels, I connected with Jacob by listening, relating and understanding.  I connected with Savanna by challenging her, encouraging her and giving her a safe environment to take risks.  It's important to remember all people are different.  What lasting impressions do you have?  What lasting impressions will your students leave with?



NEXT WEEK AT A GLANCE:

Monday, April 15th:  Maggie Moo's Fundraising evening 5:30-7:30
Tuesday, April 16th:  Panther Pride Luncheon
Tuesday, April 16th:  String Team 4pm
Wednesday, April 17th:  K-2 assembly in cafeteria


iPAD iNFORMATION:

Appy Mall shared by @JeromeSimon


Score Rubrics on the iPad  shared by @ClassTechTips



Articles Worth Reading:



Don't Teach To The Test  shared by @NMHS_Principal


Why Grade? shared by @twhitford written by @blocht574



10 Excellent Platforms to Create Your Own Classroom Website and Blog shared by @stumpteacher

5 Ways to Continue Growing as a Teacher shared by @MrPowersCMS

Book Clubs: In Our Kids' Voices by @Cantiague_Lead

8 things You Can't Learn in the Classroom by @marcandangel

12 Things I want my daughter to know by @ShutUpRun



Videos Worth Watching:

It is Masters Weekend! I shared this inspiring video with our 3-5th graders at the Wednesday Assembly. (12 min)



Just because this was one of the best shots I have ever seen (4 min)!




Social Media Revolution! Everyone should see this. (3 min)








What's Wrong With Our Food System? Shared by an 11 year old! (5 min)





Ellen versus Michelle Obama...check this out! (3 min)



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