Thursday, June 28, 2012

Who Do You Teach?

There have been years that after Meet the Teacher I am scared and already praying and saying Help Me Jesus.

One year I had a child that grabbed a pointer and hit his mom on the head numerous times.

Another year I had a child that chewed on a puzzle and ATE a piece....and mom even tried to pry his mouth open to  remove it and told me he likes to eat things and I might have to fish things out of his mouth....ummm, NO!!!!!

One of my favorite memories is the child who took of his shoe and started biting his toenails. Later in the year this child did lose his library book....on the roof!

As the year goes on, I see all different sides of my little one's personalities....as I am sure, they see mine. =)

There are so many of my kiddos that I worry about. I worry about the ones with severe anger issues and the ones who think that the rules don't apply to them. There have been little ones who know WAY MORE about certain things than I did even in college. There have been times when I can easily see one of my little girls getting pregnant as a teenager or wonder if a little one stays on their current path if jail is in their future.

I am often sad because it seems someone is robbing our kiddos of their childhood. They watch movies and tv shows often meant for adults. Some of the words in their vocabulary I didn't learn until way later in life...I might have heard it but I would have been terrified to utter it at school.

Many of our kiddos don't seem to know how to wonder, asks questions, or use their imagination.

I know I cannot change them but show them a better way to handle situations and their emotions.

In each of our classrooms is the future....that scares me at times. I have joked that when I am old and in the hospital and a certain child comes near me I want a DNR right then!

I know I will get frustrated with my kiddos but I know we are all given grace.....and we will need to embrace them with love AND patience.

One of my favorite chapters in Conscious Discipline is the chapter on Positive Intent...seeing the best in others and seeing those frustrating moments and behavior issues as teachable moments.

I think when we see our kiddos as the future we will look at those moments as chances to help them become  caring and helpful individuals.

I pray God can use me to make a difference in the lives of each little future in my class.

I actually wrote this poem in college. 

When I found this poem today, I realized that I needed to remember that a curriculum is important but so are the lessons our children learn by watching us. I know God is using us to leave heartprints on each kiddo in our class.

From My Heart to Yours,

50 heart notes:

Tonia said...

Oh my, you must have a heart of gold to do what you do for your challenging kids. Thanks for sharing and the poem.
Tonia
Mrsvento.blogspot

Jennifer Tilton said...

This is so true. I often wonder about the future of my students.
You are a very good writer!
Jennifer
kindertrips

Briawna said...

Thank you for being so inspiring and Christ-led when talking about your students. It's a blessing to know that other teachers see their students as I do.

Just Wild About Teaching said...

this is an awesome poem... your kiddies are quite the interesting ones huh ? lol im having a give away come drop by =)


Just Wild About Teaching

Jane said...

Wow - well done Heather. Very touching....

Learning in the Little Apple

Beg, Borrow, and Teach! said...

I'm starting on Chapter 3 now. I guess my biggest sticking point is trying to move away from the judging comments and towards the noticing comments. Well, that and I'm struggling with getting rid of the treasure basket :)

Ms. Mentzer's Kindergarten Class said...

I love this!!!!! The beginning of the year is always an exciting yet interesting time! I have given your blog two awards!! The One Lovely Blog award and the Versitile Blogger award!! Head on over to my page to claim them!!! :)

Michelle

www.kindergartenstars1.blogspot.com

M said...

Thank you for your honesty and sharing this incredible poem. I wonder the same thing about my loves as well. I often worry about them as much as I worry about my own babygirl. It takes an incredible heart to care as much as you do.

Jennifer K. said...

I love your poem! I think that is the major reason that I teach in a Title I school - because I do want to be able to inspire my students and teach them that there is a better way. Thank you for reminding me that the rewards are so worth the worry and heartache that sometimes comes!

Jennifer @ Herding Kats In Kindergarten

Mrs.Slocum said...

That is exactly how I feel. Somehow God has placed us with these kids to help & nurture them. It is so hard some moments, but I always try to remember that each child in my class is a child of God.

Thanks for the post!

Mrs. Slocum
Teacher's Don't Steal, They Share!

Fluttering Through First Grade said...

You are so right on Heather! We forget that there are little impressionable souls inside those lil bodies. We are growing kids up way too fast these days. The innocence is lost and what they're exposed to at such an early age is frightening!
Thank you for your sweet and caring heart and for reminding us of this.
~Christy & Tammy

Anne Tussing said...

What an inspiring post!! I agree with you and know that when I get frustrated I need to go back to the reason why I teach. I, too, ordered Conscious Discipline and should be receiving it soon.

Lisa said...

Thanks for sharing your poem! You truly have a gift for writing! It is so inspirational! God bless!

~ Lisa
Teaching Kindergarten Kiddos

Tootsie and Teed said...

Oh Heather I love your blog. I'm gonna meet up with a teacher friend of my today for some lunch and will definitely tell her about you as she teaches 1st grade too. She's always looking for new ideas. Love, love, love your philosophy on teaching as I feel the same way myself. I'm gonna take a peek at that beautiful poem of yours. Happy Friday my new friend.
Linda

Jen said...

This post is spectacular, Heather! These are things that I think about with my class every year. I find the biggest rewards when I see the children that they have become at the end of the year after I have been able to model love, respect, kindness, caring, responsibility, etc to them. Thanks for sharing!

~Jen
Jen's Kinder Kids

Erica said...

I totally related to you in the beginning of this post. I often feel that meet the teacher night is one of the worst days of the whole year. I DREAD IT. I am nervous, I have to talk in front of so many grown ups, and the kids are excited, but have to just sit there and listen, so they get a little squirrely. I always go home terrified of the year to come. Things are always better after that day. I loved this post and how you sated that many children are robbed of their childhood and don't know how to ask questions or wonder. SIgh - all too true. Your students are blessed to have a teacher like you who is aware of this and wants to give them a safe, wonder-filled classroom.
Erica

Sprinkles to Kindergarten

Kelli Eddleblute said...

I'm so glad you became one of my newest followers! I love your blog. I will def. be creeping, I mean looking at it a lot more!!!

Spotted in First Grade

Anonymous said...

Oh My! I believe I am your twin! We must have been separated at teaching assignments. I have had this type of year for the past 5 years. Your comments are mine exactly. All I can do, all we can do, is pray without ceasing. Keep up the good work that you do and know that someday you'll see a plant growing from the seed you've sown.

Mary Lyn in Tennessee

LindaC said...

You're amazing and the children are lucky to have you for a teacher. I think your influence carries on a lot longer than you think. All we can do for our children is our very best, academically and character-wise. We can pray for them and their families. We can show them a better way or I should say, a different way. Beautiful, inspiring poem! Thank you for being such an inspiration for all of us, too!

Erin Sample said...

Aww.. that was beautiful! Thanks for sharing. I'm going to put that on my desk for those days that I forget.:)
Erin
Sample’s Superstars

Caring 4 Kinders said...

Heather,
Very well put! I think all teachers who are invested in their students' wellbeing have thoughts, doubts, worries, and prayers for them just as you do. I know that as a child, I got away from my negative home environment and went to school where the world opened up to me, and I truly loved my teachers for that gift (I'm certain I never said anything to them about it). Their investments in my life, however little or grand, made my life better. We only get our students for a few months of their lives, but we can choose to make a great impact on them. Thanks for the inspiration when we really need it. On those days when I can hear myself thinking, "What have I gotten myself into and why am I doing this job again?" At the end of the school year, even if what we do for them goes unrecognized or doesn't seem to make big impact on their lives, we are left with the biggest payoff: guiding our students as they grow into independent people. Even when I'm having an off days, I cherish the ability to greet my students with a smile. They may never get one at home.

Many blessings!

Suzanne
Caring 4 Kinders

Barbara said...

You said it!! I have had all those exact same thoughts :))
I just bought Conscious Discipline (on your recommendation) and am really loving it. Thank you!

❀Barbara❀
Grade ONEderful
Ruby Slippers Blog Designs

Miss Trayers said...

I think it's really wonderful how you share your ideas! Really inspiring. Can't top biting toenails, but this year I actually did have a student come in the first day of school and sit down at my computer looking for some game site! That has never happened before. They certainly can be interesting, but I blogged myself recently about really taking the time to get to know them, and to know what works for them. Anyway, I always look forward to reading your posts-thanks so much for sharing your thoughts with us! :)

NotJustChild'sPlay

Angel Read said...

I love your poem! I know what you mean about wondering how their futures are going to turn out. Every prison inmate, drug addict, etc, was once a little kid in someone's classroom... and so was every successful, well-adjusted person! I've known a lot of little kids who come to school talking about playing Halo and watching violent movies, with their parents' approval. So sad... when do they get to enjoy being innocent little kids?

Chrissy said...

You have some crazy meet the teacher night stories- yikes! I've never had a student try to each my puzzle.
As sad as I was to read your post, it is nice to know that others feel this way and see the same things. I worry about my students' futures and their lack of creativity, ability to think, and their vocabularies. One thing I love about blogging is that I find out how much I'm not alone. Thank you. And thanks for introducing me to Conscious Discipline. I'm enjoying it.
_Chrissy
First Grade Found Me

Primary Possibilities said...

I know what you mean. I sometimes think that if SOMETHING doesn't change in this child's life I know where they will be in 10 years...and it isn't good.

Stephany

Tammy said...

Boy, do I relate to some of your stories. Teaching is not always an easy job. Sometimes I feel like I need a couselor just to talk though some of my students issues so that I can relate to them and try to help them in some way. (But most of the help needs to go to the parents.) We have a saying in our school:

"These parents are bringing us the best that they have. They are not keeping the good ones at home."

That is so true. Parents are giving us their best children. We have a BIG JOB to do in education now and it's just not teaching anymore. We are raising and molding each child every year.

Thanks for your great post.

<a
href="http://tammyflickingerpage.blogspot.com>Mrs Flickinger's Butterfly Oasis</a>

goernerv said...

Thanks, Heather! I always enjoy reading your posts! I love knowing there are others out there who think a little like me!
Happy Summer!

A Teacher Without a Class said...

I often feel I am to be in a classroom to help those children who are robbed of being a child. I am glad you are another of those teachers! Thanks for sharing the poem. I can't believe your nieces have practiced straight for over 1,000 days. I've got to set up that type of chart for my five year old. We have been taking it for a year and a half, and she has really improved!

hmichaud said...

Hi Heather! Thanks for stopping by my blog today! I love your analogy of "and even though there are days when they seem to suck all of my nectar..." oh how true this can be! Our reward in the end of watching their growth is a huge part of what keeps us going. I agree with you too that childhood seems to disappear way too early lately...if only we could slow that down for our kiddos...Thanks for the tip on the borders, I think you were reading my mind, because the one I was leaning to was the first one...Heathers must think alike! ;)
~Heather~
http://cantmakethisstuffup-hmichaud.blogspot.com/

Amy Grout said...

Hi Heather...thank you for following me. Your blog caused me over an hour of searching the internet for your graphics - it is adorable. :) I so agree with your tagline at the top. Our students are so much more than a test ID number. Your students are lucky to work with someone who has such a life-affirming philosophy.

Happy Blogging!
Amy

Chynna said...

Love this post! Heather, you are awesome. I love reading your blog...you talk about so many of the topics that have been on my mind lately. THanks for your inspiration.

Chynna
http://mrshtheteachingblog.blogspot.com

Dixie Selva said...

Hi Heather!

I just awarded you the "Versatile Blogger" award. Come by my blog and pick it up! :)

Dixie
Teachin' Little Texans

Unknown said...

What a wonderful post! I am still waiting for my CD book to come in the mail :( But your posts always get me excited for when it will actually come! You are a fantastic poet! :)

~Heidi V.

Cherie said...

You write really well! I was always horrible at writing poems, but you did a great job with this! :)

Cherie
The {mis}adventures of first grade

Bea said...

You are gifted with grace. You are already making a difference. Your students are blessed to have you. Their futures are shining bright as early as the present. I pray there will be more of you in this world...

Greg said...

I totally feel you!! I am always terrified on the first day. More because in afraid i am going to fail my students and damage them. This year I had 3 cry so hard on day one that they threw up. I had one who threw tantrums daily which involved her throwing her shoes and socks. And I had one that tried to climb out the window and when he didn't make it he got so mad he deliberately broke his arm! True story. But I LOVE my job and love to see these babies grow and prosper.

I'm your newest follower! I hope you'll check out my manly blog!

Greg
Www.kindergartensmorgasboard.blogspot.com

Julie Buda said...

Your blog is lovely, and I can tell that you are a lovely person too! Thank you for following my blog-I can't wait to read more inspirational posts on yours!

~Julie
www.thehipteacher.blogspot.com

Jen Martin said...

Your poem is amazing! I am loving your blog. Just added your button. :)

Jen

Mrs. P said...

I love your poetry! You have such wonderful, inspirational messages in all of your posts.. I am so glad to have found your blog. I know that my first year of teaching is not going to be easy, but I know that having a blog like yours to read will keep my spirits lifted.

Thanks for sharing:)

Ashley
That's So Second Grade

Jessica said...

I love this poem! It sums up my philosophy of teaching.Thanks so much for sharing! God Bless!

Super Teacher Tactics said...

Beautiful, BEAUTIFUL poem. So happy to follow your blog! :D
~Dawn
SuperTeacherTactics