2 May 2014

teaching today

i loved teaching today. i really loved it. and after all the insane wild craziness that has been the past six weeks of my life as an 8th grade teacher, i can't even explain how good that felt to love it today.

coming back from spring break was pretty rough ... i didn't get nearly as much work done as i'd hoped, and i had nearly forgotten how busy my teaching life is back here in california. i was feeling pretty stressed and overwhelmed as i stood behind my students in our "monday morning congress."



during every monday morning congress, teachers acknowledge students that have earned "feathers." receiving a feather is just getting a little nod that your teacher has really noticed that you've been exemplifying one of our school's core values (ambition, leadership, perspective, hard work and attitude). this monday, after i told the entire student body about two students in my class that deserved feathers, i noticed three of my eighth graders coming to the front of the group of 370 middle schoolers. 

and loud and proud, they awarded me a feather - for hard work. without any prompting, these girls had decided that it would be right to acknowledge my hard work to all of their peers. this was the first time a teacher had received a feather! my heart just about melted into a puddle right then and there.

during lunch on thursdays, we have a little feather ceremony (on monday they're just mentioned). i figured my students would forget about that, but half way through eating my lunch today in the staff lounge, another teacher peeked in and said, "ms. eyre, do you know you're getting a feather right now?" another of my students was giving a little speech about my hard work. 

gosh, that little moment just made me feel like it's kind of all worth it. 

most mornings, i give the students five minutes to "check in" on how they are feeling - they share in groups and then some volunteers share with the class. today i decided to do things a bit differently. i told them that i was feeling really grateful this morning (mostly because my new niece shelby grace, born with a heart defect, is doing well), and i asked them what they were grateful for. those five minutes were the sweetest! the students shared a lot of genuine and thoughtful thankfulness (and some silly thankfulness too!) and it was warm fuzzies all around. 

i really really like my students, even though they are really really hard sometimes. i really like that i have all kinds of funny stories about teaching them, even though i also have very challenging stories. i really like answering their thoughtful questions about animal farm and galaxies and quadratic equations and manifest destiny, even though they also ask me questions that i've already answered five times about the instructions on the homework. 

yes, today at least, i loved teaching.

4 comments :

  1. Congrats on the feather, that's brill & well deserved:)

    You'll have to take some pix of it (& put it on here so we can see it) & put it in a memory book/journal.

    Congrats too on becoming an auntie again. I hope everything will be ok with Shelby.

    Cheerio from the uk.

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  2. Building those relationships are the most important. Sharing about you and having them know who you are, makes them feel important. You are awesome. So glad you earned a feather! Praying for your new niece.
    Heather

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  3. You touch people in a unique way that no other can and it's amazing to see.

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  4. Nothing, except Shelby coming home could have made me happier! Congrats! You SO deserved that! Love that even though I don't know the specifics, I know you and love the influence you're having on those kids who need you!

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