Thursday, November 7, 2013

Trying on my 'teacher' shoes

Practicum has been going wonderfully! Honestly, I am a little in shock that everything is going so well. Usually I have random problems that are thrown at me. And since this is the ONLY thing that I'm doing in my life, it's the only thing I have to talk about.

So sometimes you have to brag. I got observed by my CFA (my major uses a lot of acronyms, but basically the CFA makes sure you can actually teach, and if not, kicks you out of the program) for the first time last week. It was a very frightening experience. My lesson didn't go exactly as planned, but for the most part I felt it worked. However, I received my official observation form from my CFA today and it made me so happy. I have a TON to work on, as she pointed out, but this was my favorite part:

"Right away I notice what a good teacher voice you have.  You seem very confident and students sense this.  Your interaction is genuine and warm.  It is a joy to see how natural you are at this job. You are so believable in the role as teacher.  As I watched you today it was thrilling to see how well suited to being in front of a first grade class you are.  It honestly was hard to believe this is your first practicum.  I saw so many good techniques that were more suited to a more experienced teacher.  You are a natural!" 

So there's my bragging... sorry. A week ago I was ready to quit. I was sure I would be a horrible teacher. But now I'm starting to understand my role as a teacher, and it's a lot less complicated than I previously thought. 

I love these kids. They say the funniest things to me! The other day I wore a dress to school. One of my sweet little girls came up to me and said, "I love your costume." I was slightly confused. "My costume?" I asked and she smiled sweetly up at me. "Yes, you make a pretty princess." Bless her heart. I like knowing that I can live in a world where when I wear a dress I become a princess. I also had another girl who explained to me that her mother was fat because she ate a lot of cookies. I'm sure her mother would really appreciate her saying that to me. I also love it when the kids invite me to play soccer or tag with them at recess. I know I'm not there to be their friend, and I always make that clear, but I like that they want ME involved in what they're doing. All in all, life is wonderful. I've never had days go by so quickly and sleep so soundly at nights. 

I'm not sure when I'll have children; hopefully I'm blessed one day with a few. But I hope that I can be a better mom because of what I'm learning right now. When you're being 'mom' for 23 children, you start to realize what's most important for them to succeed. Want to know the secret? Expectations. Yes, it is that simple. Expectations are everything. If you expect there to be no drama and you don't tolerate it when it pops up, guess what? There is no drama. It's wonderful. If you expect kids to be respectful, they will be. 

Sorry for such a 'deep' post, but I've just felt like I needed to get it all out so I can look back and remember.