Yesterday afternoon, I was talking to my sister, a passionate and gifted teacher who has been teaching for many years. Like many of us, at the end of a teaching day we have stories to tell about the adventures of another day in teaching. My sister, Voni, was relaying a humourous experience from her Year 6 class. Her students really knowwho she is. They know about her dog named “Shadow”. They know some of her favourite ‘silly’ sayings. They know how much she loves shoes and handbags. All these things form part of her classroom community.
At the end of her story, Voni said this amazing phrase:
“When you give out a part of who you are, that’s when a good teacher becomes a great teacher.”
What a powerful statement!
I have asked many students to tell me about their favourite teachers. I have heard a variety of responses, but in every response, great teachers share one commonality: they allow themselves, who they are, to be an integral part of their teaching.
“Mr S. is really passionate about what he teaches.”
“Teaching is really part of Miss G’s life.”
“Mrs K always seems like she wants to be in class to teach.”
Great teachers share part of their identity, who they are, with their students.
This week’s assignment:
Don’t try and hide your true self from your students. Be natural. Be true to your self. Share your stories, tell them about your pets, teach them some of your favourite sayings. Let who you are permeate how you teach.
Remember, we teach who we are.
Enjoy the journey,
And more importantly,
Enjoy the moments.