It’s been quite a year, this last 2012, with all the changes in education and the negative attitudes toward education and teachers. But we keep going, don’t we? Because our job is more than just a job. So, to set my commitments for the next year, I browsed my Twitter feed and favorite blogs to guide me.
I knew a direction was needed. Who else had a similar idea for this new direction?
Amanda Dykes wrote a reflective post whose thoughts are probably felt by many teachers at some time, but then each will look at the faces in front of them, and remember why they became teachers. So, Amanda reminds me to say: “I’m ready to go back to studying the trees and trusting the forest will grow one tree at a time.” I need to focus on the students while making the changes expected.
Sheryl Nussbaum-Beach reminded me in her reflective New Year’s post to “admit my mistakes, forgive myself and then focus forward.” Her goal is “I am determined to influence the world this year rather than be influenced by it. ” That correlates to Amada’s reflection: we as teachers need to stay focused on what counts — our students, no matter the issues, especially the negative ones, around us.
Then I discovered through a tweet by Joann Jacobs this wonderful post and project by Shelly Terrell. She starts out with “Teaching is a tough job with an important mission.” and “each time we are with our learners, we impact them.” and this reminder “We cannot hold a torch to light another’s path without brightening our own.”~ Ben Sweetland. Her 30 Goals Challenge for Educators: Dare to Believe, offering support to a network of educators reflecting on their practice to become the best they can be.
And finally, Krissy Venosdale wrote See the Good: A 365 Photo Project, another wonderful project to actively see the good in education and join other educators in support of that good by share 365 photos, a photo a day, of the good in education.
After pondering these amazing educators and their projects, my commitment for the new year includes:
1) Focus Forward on Teaching and Learning — the wonderful faces and minds in my middle school classrooms: How do I help them grow as learners?
2) Frame Reflections to refocus on thinking forward and extending conversations in my professional growth with my PLN and PLC and personal growth with family — How do I support my own and my colleagues success?
3) Filter Priorities — stay focused on family and teaching/learning for my students to find and spread the good there is in my world. How do I balance my time to succeed in the goals close to my heart — for my family and students?
4) Find the Flow — allow fun and creativity to flow through my life. How do I enjoy, and help others enjoy, the work and play done as a family or as a class?
These four goals will guide me to balance in my life while focusing forward creatively on the good in education and how I can guide my students to their own balanced and positive learning.
How about you? What are your commitments for the New Year 2013?