|Here's me in my classroom before school started, looking bright-eyed and ready for the new challenge!|
I haven't blogged much this year. I have been busy plodding along on the continuous curve of learning, having made a huge change this year: going from teaching kindergarten at a school where I taught for 5 years and felt like I knew everyone, to teaching 4th grade at a completely different school. Learning a new curriculum, getting up to snuff on the traditions and culture of my new school, TEACHING ( yes, that's my actual real job), and trying to keep up with commitments, such as tutoring kids I've worked with for years, planning a book with a member of my PLN, presenting at 2 conferences and still managing my personal life have been overwhelming at times. And with that I offer a sincere apology to my family and friends as I have not been as present as I wish to be.
Needless to say, although I often feel like I am moving ahead two steps and falling back three, I do believe that I have grown immensely by stepping out of my comfort zone and taking on this new challenge. I must also say, that I have had some of my most satisfying moments of teaching, interacting with wonderful 4th graders at a critical point in their learning journeys.
Here are some reflections about what helped me thrive and what I will do differently in the future!
Lisa Dabbs to consider presenting with her at the March 2011ASCD conference in SF. Although my first reaction was one of self-doubt, citing that I was "too busy and overwhelmed," I took a few days to think about the opportunity I might be turning down. When else would I be invited to co-present at an international conference? I am so happy that I did! I got to meet even more of my wonderful PLN members as well as experience a boost in confidence and realization that I love connecting and sharing with educators from around the world! Here is a fun interview with Ken Royal, senior editor for Scholastic, that spontaneously happened at the conference.
Savor the moments: Don't get so caught up in the pressures of curriculum, grading, deadlines, that you forget who you are there for: your students. Especially now, at this busy end of the year time, I am going to school each day with a mantra of making the most of each moment by being present. Our relationships with students and how we interact with them make a HUGE difference in their perceptions about themselves as learners.
Finally, a big reminder about what I will do differently: take better care of me! Confession: I have not been as faithful to the goal of eating well and exercising regularly as I should be. Of course I have the endless list of excuses, but I WILL find a better way over the upcoming school year to spend a bit more time on taking care of me. I have had a few health issues creep up this year, and most are probably related to stress! I will reach out to my network of both online and face-to-face friends and get back on the bandwagon. Summer will provide the perfect opportunity to get back on the #TEMT ( Twitter Exercise Motivation Team) train.
I would love to hear your thoughts on how you manage transitions such as these. Please share!