I feel terrible. I have not been able to post anything to my blog in several days. I have even dropped the ball on the photo challenges I have been participating in with SDAWP Photo Voices. I have been challenged by my 2nd graders this year. It has gotten to the point where it has taken up my free time at home!
As a fellow blogger, Texas Teaching Fanatic (KaylaShook), stated, “There’s nothing quite like beginning-of-the-school-year tired. I know this will get better, but right now I’m pooped!” She totally wrote what I feel. I am pooped. More and more I am finding out that my students have needs beyond the academic. It has literally zapped the energy from me, and it takes a lot to do that!
I must remember why I became a teacher in the first place. I know I am going to make a difference in my students’ lives. I have to stop thinking about everything as a challenge. I need to start enjoying what I do in the classroom more. I think that is the reason I am so tired all the time. I am reminded by a quote by Deepak Chopra.
The past is gone. The future is not here. Now I am free of both. What am I
choosing right now? Choose joy.
I need to remember to choose joy.
This evening my friend, Christie, and I had the opportunity to listen to Steve Farber speak. He is the author of the book The Radical Leap Re-Energized.
I read the book at the end of last year and was inspired to change the way I thought about work. The main idea is that cultivating Love generates Energy inspires Audacity and provides Proof (LEAP). In order to be an extreme leader you must love what you do in the service of people who love what you do.
During the course of the presentation, Mr. Farber challenged us to think about 4 guiding questions.
Why do I love this and how do I show it?
- What do I/we really do here? What’s the “higher meaning and purpose” in my/our work?
- How are we going to change the world of our students, staff, etc?
- Do I/we really want to do this (L.E.A.P.)?
Just thinking about these questions made me really think about how I can change the way I do “business” at work. How will I interact with the people I encounter each day? What energy am I giving? The questions helped me remember why I actually wanted to be a teacher. It also made me think about why I might want to be an administrator. I should not be afraid to take the L.E.A.P. in my daily life.
At the end of the presentation, Mr. Farber left us all with one more question to ponder. I write it here for all of you to do the same: What can you do right now to change the piece of the world you are in, regardless of the people and the circumstances around you, for the better?
Tonight was Back To School Night for my youngest daughter who is in middle school. I get to take the teacher hat off and be a mom on this evening. I was amazed by the energy and enthusiasm of my child’s teachers. Every single one of them talked about how they wanted their students to succeed. I feel like my daughter is very lucky to have such wonderful teachers for her first year in middle school.
My own Back To School Night is tomorrow night. I hope to bring that same energy and enthusiasm to the parents of my classroom. This is going to be an exciting year of learning, and I hope I can show that to parents. I want to encourage my parents to let their child take more responsibility for their learning, and I want them to know that their children are capable of doing things independently. I realize that it is hard to let go and trust that your child will figure things out. But, they do. I want my parents to understand that I have high expectations, and I believe all my students can reach them.
Tomorrow will be my twenty-sixth Back To School Night. I can’t believe it. You would think that after twenty-five years Back To School Night would be easy. The truth is I still get nervous. My heart beats fast. My palms get clammy. I break into a sweat. I have to do a lot of self-talk before the event. I know what I am doing, and I know what I am talking about. Nevertheless, I will be happy when tomorrow night is finally over!