Someone announced in the teacher's lounge the other day we had four more Monday's left of school. My reaction? What? No way was school that close to being over. Aargh! I didn't want to face the truth as I knew then it would be time to assess me--what goals had I accomplished, what had been successful and what an utter failure? What would I scrap and what would I use next year? All valid questions that needed solid answers.
So for the past few days I've been thinking, wondering, postulating, exploring, and evaluating what I've done this year. I've reviewed the course and teacher evaluations my students complete at the end of a class. What suggestions did they give that I can incorporate into my teaching?
I know of a few things that will change and some things that will stay the same. My corny joke of the day garnered the most accolades from students followed by Funny Fridays where we watch a clip of some comedian (usually Jim Gaffigan, my favorite). Why do I waste precious class time with such inane things? Because I don't think they're inane. My kids need to learn to laugh and they need to see an adult laughing. Laughter is good for the soul and often these comedic moments lead to great class discussions later. Funny Fridays won't be abandoned by me any time soon.
Being a reflective teacher leads to being an effective teacher. Unless I can honestly look at my teaching and evaluate what I do in the classroom, I can't change. Unless I change, I'll be mired in the same morass of repetitive teaching; teaching that didn't knock anyone's socks off the first time around.
I don't want to be a static teacher. I want to be dynamic, ever-changing and reflecting on how I can improve both myself and my classroom. Did you know we only have four Monday's left in our school year? How are you going to spend your time? Me? I'm going to keep looking backward so I can move forward. It can make all the difference.