Helpless & hopeless OR helpful & hopeful

I am not sure where I stand today.  One of my posts was about THE POWER OF A TEACHER.

I still believe in my power, in our power.  I do believe in the change I can mold, make or model, but I’ll try to make this short and sweet even though there are so many thoughts swirling in my head. I’ll try…

This post will not be my happy shiny smiley usual post.  I am a bit conflicted today.

How much power do we have?  How much power do I have?  I am not talking about being an authority figure, that is not what I mean by power.  I never mean authority nor any sort of intimidating gross power when I say that word power.  I am talking about the power of change.  I am talking about a positive, proactive power to create what I want to see in the world around me. That is my job.  It is our job.

I feel each day I need to be my best self.  I need to be my true self.  I need to live in gratitude and appreciation for all the good around me and love and accept all that occurs through out my day with an open mind and an open heart.  I need to recognize the good, the bad and the ugly, and be present so that others can follow along and maybe feel the way I feel about life…just good.  I feel good.  I need to be my best self for me first and then for my students and any one else I encounter through out my day.  That’s a lot of pressure, but I like it.  I like the pressure to be my best self.  I have little eyes, ears, hearts and minds learning and watching each day.  That is A LOT of pressure, but I really do like it.  It is such a challenge.  It is such an adventure.

I attempt to do this on a daily basis.  I think I do a pretty good job.  But in my short 31 years of life and in my short 9 years of teaching I have learned that there is only so much I can CONTROL.  I teach in an AMAZING school district.  There is no question that my place of work rocks and I could NOT ask for a better environment to grow and learn along with my students and colleagues.  It is a spectacular place.  Thinking about this CONTROL and this POWER for change that I possess, here is (are) my question(s):

What do I do about a student who grows up in a family environment where they are taught to lie and fabricate any story (no matter what) to get what they want?  How much change can I make in that child’s life and do I try when the parent is doing the same to get and manipulate what they want?  Can I help there?  Can I be a change there?  I am not so sure…

What do I do about a student who feels so poorly about themselves because their parent makes them feel that way?  How much change can I make in a child’s life who is so accustomed to negative attention from a parent that they seek it from me?  I don’t give it.  I am only giving love.  But I am not that child’s constant.  I am only there for them 40 minutes per day.  Can I be a change there?  I hope so…

How many times can I model kind, empathetic, sensitive behavior to a group of students who continue to over-dramatize situations just for the sake of drama?  I am lucky enough to know my students for NINE YEARS.  I CAN really truly make change.  But some times I just don’t see it and I am hopeful…or is it hopeless for some of these situations?

Please, please comment!  Get me out of this funk!

Power of a TEACHER

The Power of a Teacher

My principal Debbie Barnes gave us all an activity to do one day at a staff meeting about 4 year ago. She gave us a piece of paper with a question, What do you remember about your best/favorite teacher? Describe your favorite/best teacher. Or something like that…

I made the list and was enamored with it, recognizing its importance, and hung it in a place where I see it each day (by my computer) so that I can be reminded that it is my job first and foremost, before I teach Spanish, I must make my students feel the way my favorite teacher made me feel. They need to feel good, safe, smart, comfortable, special and loved to name just a few.

In that same staff meeting, she gave us this quote from Haim G. Ginott

Most important quote for me to see EVERY DAY!

This quote has been so important in my teaching career. I cannot really express its importance in words. When I think about how much power a teacher really has, it is mind-boggling! I use this quote every day to help my students feel the same way my favorite teacher(s) (there were more than one) made me feel each day as I was around them.